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Peta Murphy, ALP Member for Dunkley, Dies, 50

Last updated on December 9, 2023

The death of Peta Murphy, the ALP member Dunkley, was announced by a tearful Prime Minister Anthony Albanese this afternoon.

The government’s Senate leader, Penny Wong, also announced the death to the Senate when it sat at 2.00pm.

Murphy first battled breast cancer in 2011. A recurrence was diagnosed two weeks after her election to parliament in 2019. In her first speech to the House, she described the disease as “sneaky” and said, “cancer sucks”.

Murphy first contested the Frankston-based electorate of Dunkley, in Victoria, in 2016. Narrowly defeated by the Liberal Party’s Chris Crewther, she won the seat in a rematch in 2019. She was re-elected in 2022, securing a 3.53% swing and holding the seat by 6.27%.

Formerly a solicitor advocate (2002-07) and barrister (2008-16), she was the Senior Public Defender at Victorian Legal Aid (2012-14) and Team Leader at the Victorian Law Reform Commission (2015). She was an adviser to former Attorney-General and future Federal Court judge Duncan Kerr (1999-2001). In opposition, she was Chief of Staff to the current Minister for Skills and Training, Brendan O’Connor (2017-19).

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese announces the death of Peta Murphy MP (8m):

Senator Penny Wong announces Peta Murphy’s death to the Senate (2m):

Murphy
Peta Murphy in 2020

Murphy
Peta Murphy speaking on gambling harm in the Federation Chamber, October 19, 2023

The by-election for Dunkley will be held early next year. It will be the third by-election of the current parliament.


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Malcolm Farnsworth
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