Greek Australian member of parliament, Steve Georganas, is one of the longest serving federal Greek Australian parliamentarians in Australia. He will again contest the May 21, federal election in order to secure his Adelaide seat in the federal parliament.
Mr Georganas is Labor’s member for the seat of Adelaide and has held it since the 2019 Australian federal elections.
Prior to that, 2004 to 2013, he was the member for Hindmarsh and again from 2016 to 2019.
Known for his willingness to listen and understand his electorate’s needs, Mr Georganas, told Neos Kosmos he is ready to again to take on the election challenge.
“To me helping members of our community is the best part of my job and what I enjoy that the most. Knowing my electorate and being able to deliver an outcome and see people happy is what makes me want to keep going,” said the 62-year-old who started his political career two decades ago after having worked as a taxi driver, a factory assembly line worker, an underwriter and a policy adviser.
Mr Georganas is a former member of the boards of the West Adelaide SANFL Football Club and Thebarton Senior College.
He has worked as an organiser advocating for workers’ rights in the airline and local government sectors.
Previously he held the seat of Hindmarsh and served as the Second Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives.
He served on numerous committees, including as Chair of the Health and Ageing Committee.
In parliament he advocated for local jobs, fighting offshoring of call centre work and successfully lobbying for the establishment of the Aircraft Noise Ombudsman. He championed more scrutiny over the live animal export trade and supported a shift to onshore slaughter and meat processing to create more jobs and protect animal welfare.
Mr Georganas is the deputy chair of the parliamentary standing committee on corporations and financial services.
He is the proud son of migrants from Arkadia and Messinia. His father migrated to Australia in 1954 and worked at the Holden factory in Melbourne before moving to South Australia where he met his wife. Mr Georganas was born in Adelaide and has lived in the electorate his entire life.
“The day I decided to enter politics I made a conscious decision to dedicate my life to the people of South Australia including my fellow Greeks, and all migrants, who came out and worked hard to build a better future for themselves and their families while making a significant contribution to Australia’s economy and prosperity.”
ELDERY, HEALTHCARE AND EDUCATION
“People remain my top priority,” said Mr Georganas who has been an advocate for better and improved aged care services vowing that he will continue to fight hard for the elderly as well as the working-class families by ensuring there is access to quality education and health care services.
“The pandemic has shown us how important it is that our healthcare system is protected and strengthened. This will be one of my priorities. Over $135 million invested to create 50 Medicare Urgent Care Centres around the country. Ensuring that millions of Australians will save $12.50 on medical scripts. Labor has committed to cut the cost of medications by reducing the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) co-payment from the current maximum of $42.50 per script, to a maximum of $30 per script.”
MULTICULTURALISM AND LANGUAGE DIVERSITY
Promoting multiculturalism and language diversity is one of Mr Georganas’ priorities.
“I fought hard for the additional funding for ethnic schools, and I am pleased that Labor has committed to investing $15 million to help more kids learn a second language. This means that schools can apply for grant funding of up to $30,000 over three years, which can be used to teach pre-school aged children for the first time, buy laptops for online teaching, invest in teacher training, provide fee-relief for disadvantaged students, improve ventilation for a COVID-safe learning environment, and to help with operating costs like teacher wages.
“This is an important step to ensuring that the Greek language, as well as all other community languages, can continue to thrive for generations to come,” Mr Georganas said.
The 62-year-old MP has also fought hard for the Australian Government to call for the Parthenon Marbles to be returned to Greece.
He seconded a motion in Parliament calling on the Australian Government to join the growing number of nations that are now supporting this repatriation campaign and said that his plan is to continue this campaign.
Last year, Mr Georganas moved a motion for the Australian parliament to recognise the Pontian, Armenian and Assyrian genocides. It was the first time that the Australian Parliament agreed unanimously to debate this very important issue. The proposal calls on the federal parliament to recognize that the Ottoman Empire carried out practices of systematic persecution of Christians, Greeks, Assyrians and Armenians from 1914-1922.
“I will make it a priority to continue raising awareness and pushing for full recognition,” he concluded.