Global Motor Neurone Disease Awareness Day

Wednesday, 21 June 2023
Mr HAWKE (Mitchell) (13:57): Today is Global Motor Neurone Disease Awareness Day, a day which promotes the fight against MND and recognises the lives lost to the disease in the last year. I want to thank all the colleagues who were able to make the Global MND Awareness Day event—which I've just now left—with Professor Samar Aoun, who's the new president of the MND Association in Western Australia, the WA Australian of the Year and the chair of palliative care research at the University of Western Australia.

MND, as we know, is a rapidly progressive neurological disease where the nerve cells that control the movement of muscles progressively weaken and die. Each week 14 people are diagnosed with MND across Australia, with many communities continuing to feel the loss of those taken by MND. Last week we saw celebrities including Eric Bana, Melbourne Cup winner Michelle Payne, and Mick Fanning take on the Big Freeze, which raises money every year for the crusade against MND. Together with my co-chair of the parliamentary friends of MND group, Senator Carol Brown, and all the members here, we will ensure as a parliament that we are committed to supporting greater research awareness and NDIS treatments and to bettering the lives of sufferers.

I want to pay tribute to all those diagnosed with MND this year and their carers and to the lasting work of the organisation MND Australia and all the work done to find a cure. I want to thank Phil, Janet and Melanie for the powerful stories they told parliamentarians this morning. It's inspiring to see the strength of this community. We can do better and we will do better. I thank everyone for their attendance today.