Tamara Smith – NSW

I acknowledge the traditional owners of the land on which we live, the Bundjalung people, and pay my respects to elders past and present. This land always was and always will be Aboriginal land.

As the Member for Ballina and NSW Greens spokesperson for Education, Renewable Energy and Regional development, I am passionate about the people and places in our region. My family have lived in the Northern Rivers region for a long time and I feel a keen responsibility to care for our precious environment and stand up for the benefit of people in our communities.

I was a secondary school teacher for many years both here and in the outback and I became a solicitor in 2012. I have worked across social justice, aboriginal affairs and public education advocacy and I have a keen research interest in energy law.

Our beautiful environment and rural lifestyle on the North Coast is a tribute to the hard work of many people in the community over many years who have worked to protect it from over-development and industrialisation.

I have been active in many of these campaigns in the past and I continue to support campaigns to protect our Cape Byron Marine Park Sanctuary, the wild species of our oceans, waterways and forests and to improve the health of the Richmond River. I stood with so many of you against the industrialisation of our region through CSG mining and exploration and today our region is gas field free.

I am the first woman to represent the electorate of Ballina and the first Greens MP in a regional seat in any Parliament of Australia. My election was a dramatic shift in NSW politics and I look forward to demonstrating Greens principles of grassroots democracy in representing every person in my electorate and working to ensure the community has a greater say in the decisions of Government which impact upon their lives.

Please get in touch with my office if I can assist in any way.

You can view my inaugural speech to the parliament here.