Parliament returned last week after the long Christmas break and never has the first day back been so interesting. 

Leadership challenges are never without an air of tension, energy and excitement and last week’s event was no different.
Almost 40% of Tony Abbott’s colleagues, including 60% of his back-bench, voted to terminate his tenure as Prime Minister.  I believe his position to be now untenable, it’s just a matter of time.
My concern however, is not who leads the Coalition but rather, Tony Abbott’s poorly considered and unfair policies.  A different leader promoting the same flawed policies will fail to deliver any comfort of confidence in the Australian community.
I've spent plenty of time in nursing homes over the years, both visiting friends and relatives and in a professional capacity.  I've always been grateful to those who provide the care and services.

But it's not till you have someone very close to you in an aged care facility that you come to truly appreciate their hard work, care and compassion.  I salute all those who care for our older Australian, both in institutions and in their own home.

Prevent Bowel Cancer is an initiative running throughout the month of February to raise awareness of bowel cancer and encouraging more Australians to screen for the disease.
Bowel cancer is the second most common type of newly diagnosed cancer in Australia affecting both men and women almost equally and is Australia’s second biggest cancer killer after lung cancer.

All Australians aged 50 and over are encouraged to have a faecal immunochemical test (FIT) every 1-2 years to help save lives.

Over 15,000 Australians are diagnosed with the disease each year. Around 1,000 people diagnosed with bowel cancer are under the age of 50. Around 4,000 people die from the disease each year, more than from breast or prostate cancer.

Australia has one of the highest rates of bowel cancer in the world. 1 in 12 Australians will develop bowel cancer in their lifetime.
Please don’t wait until it’s too late.

The ABC Radio’s Heywire competition for 2015 has officially opened.

Now in its 17th year, ABC Radio’s Heywire initiative provides a platform for young Australians aged between 16-22 to submit stories about their life, and issues affecting their community.

Every year winners are invited to take part in the annual Heywire Regional Youth Summit in Canberra in the first week of Parliament. During the Summit the Heywire winners share their views on issues that matter to them and work together to develop the creative projects to improve the lives of young people in regional Australia. They also participate in leadership and community-building activities, and present their ideas and stories to Parliamentarians, policy makers and members of the broader community.
Young people from rural and regional Australia can enter Heywire by visiting abc.net.au/haywire or calling 1800 262 646.

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