Clare O’Neil (ALP – Hotham) – First Speech

Clare O’Neil was first elected as the ALP member for Hotham at the 2013 federal election.


Hotham is an electorate in south-east suburban Melbourne. It stretches from Oakleigh in the north to Dingley Village in the south. The main suburbs include Bentleigh East, Dingley Village, Heatherton, Moorabbin, Springvale South and parts of Clayton, Clayton South, Cheltenham, Keysborough, Murrumbeena, Noble Park, Oakleigh, Oakleigh South and Springvale.

The electorate was previously held by the former ALP leader Simon Crean from 1990-2013.

This is O’Neil’s first speech to the House of Representatives.

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Hansard transcript of Clare O’Neil’s first speech to the House of Representatives.


Ms O’NEIL (Hotham) (16:32): Thirty years ago, a group of Cambodians purchased a large piece of land in Springvale South. They had a vision of a regional temple, where thousands of local Buddhists would gather to worship but, when construction began, it was beset by problems. At this time one of the congregation began to be visited in her dreams by a Bunurong woman. ‘This is not your land,’ she would repeat night after night. The monks conferred and agreed that a shrine would be built to honour the Bunurong, and the congregation began to leave gifts of fruit, avocado and nuts. From there, construction ran smoothly and today Clarke Road temple is one of the largest in Melbourne. Still, worshippers leave gifts at the shrine to the Bunurong to show their respect to the traditional owners of that land. [Read more…]