The bipartisan Parliamentary Friendship Group (PFG) is open to all MPs and promotes the values of Olympism and Paralympism.
Co-chaired by Mr Nic Street MP and Mr Josh Willie MLA, the PFG was launched at a reception at the Tasmanian Parliament, attended by over 25 Members of Parliament, Prime Minister Jeremy Rockliff, AOC Chairman, Mr. Ian Chesterman, Chairman of Paralympics Australia, Mr. Jock O’Callaghan, Olympians, Paralympians and a wide range of Tasmanian sport, business, community and government representatives.
The objectives of the PFG are:
- Promote, educate and encourage participation in sport for the benefits of health, longevity, fitness, skills, achievement, social interaction, well-being and other benefits of exercise for all individuals in Tasmania;
- To promote the fundamental principles and values of Olympism and Paralympism in Tasmania, particularly in the areas of sport, health and education, by promoting Olympic and Paralympic sport, health and education programs at all levels of schools, sports and physical education institutions and universities;
- Promote the practice of sport as a human right where each individual must have the opportunity to practice sport, without discrimination of any kind which requires mutual understanding in a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play; and
- Recognize the heritage, culture and contribution of the First Peoples of our Nation and provide concrete support for the issue of Indigenous reconciliation through sport.
AOC Chairman and Launceston resident Ian Chesterman welcomed the launch of the PFG.
“I am delighted to see the launch of Tasmania’s Parliamentary Friends of the Olympic and Paralympic Movements,” said Mr Chesterman.
“The Olympic Movement has a unique role in Australian life and has the power to inspire all Tasmanians – school children watching our local heroes like Eddie Ockenden or Ariarne Titmus perform on the biggest stage and igniting their belief in pursuing their own dream, to the power of Olympic sport to engage people and improve health, well-being and community outcomes across the state.
“Olympic and Paralympic sport is a unifying force for good. With 45 member sports, supporting programs for every level of experience and ability, there truly is an Olympic sport for every Tasmanian.
“Brisbane 2032 will be a home Games for all Australians. I am particularly excited about the opportunity this presents to inspire young Tasmanians to imagine what is possible, how they can be part of what will be an extraordinary event, whether as an athlete, support staff or volunteer, and to help maximize benefits across the state.
“I thank Nic Street and Josh Willie for their leadership in chairing the PFG and to all participating members, I look forward to continuing to work with you to maximize the positive results that Olympic and Paralympic sport can bring to Tasmanians.”
Mr Nic Street, Minister for Sport and Recreation and co-chairman of the PFG, said: “It is clear from the number of Olympians and Paralympians our state has produced that Tasmania punches well above its weight on the international scene and as a state with a rich sporting history, we are extremely proud of it.
“The incredible athletes who represent Tasmania and Australia at the Olympic and Paralympic Games undoubtedly inspire many young Tasmanians to strive to follow in their footsteps. We want more Tasmanians to get active and dream big no matter where they go. live, regardless of age or circumstance, and we’re investing heavily in the state’s sports and recreation sector to make that possible.
PFG Co-Chair Mr Josh Willie, Shadow Minister for Leisure and Sport, said: “The formation of Parliamentary Friends of the Olympic and Paralympic Movements in Tasmania is an important step in realizing our aspirations in sport and promoting diversity and inclusiveness.
“The Olympic movement has something for everyone and it can have a universal impact. The challenge for our state is to build a legacy of Victoria 2026 and Brisbane 2032 to improve the lives of Tasmanians and inspire a generation.
“The Tasmanian Labor Party offers bipartisanship in the spirit of the Olympic and Paralympic movement to help Tasmania’s next generation of athletes achieve their dreams.”