Inga Peulich (born 15 October 1956) is an Australian politician. She was a member of the Legislative Council representing South Eastern Metropolitan Region from 2006 to 2018. Following the 2014 State election, Peulich was appointed the offices of Shadow Minister for Multicultural Affairs and Shadow Minister for Scrutiny of Government,[1] but was removed from the latter role in 2017.[2]

Inga Peulich
Member of the Victorian Legislative Assembly
for Bentleigh
In office
3 October 1992 – 30 November 2002
Preceded byAnn Barker
Succeeded byRob Hudson
Member of the Victorian Legislative Council
In office
25 November 2006 – 24 November 2018
Personal details
Born
Inga Došen

(1956-10-15) 15 October 1956 (age 63)
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Political partyLiberal Party
Spouse(s)Savo Peulich
ChildrenPaul Peulich
Alma materMonash University
OccupationMember of the Victorian Parliament
PortfolioShadow Minister for Multicultural Affairs
Websiteingapeulich.org

BiographyEdit

Inga Peulich is of Bosnian heritage, being born Inga Došen in Bosnia and Herzegovina and migrating to Australia in 1967 with her family.[3] Peulich is married to small business owner Savo Peulich, and their son, Paul Peulich, is currently a member of the Kingston City Council, serving as mayor in 2013–2014.[4]

Peulich has a Bachelor of Arts and a master's degree in education. Before her election as the Liberal Member for Bentleigh in the Victorian Legislative Assembly, Peulich taught VCE English and Psychology, and was English faculty head in a large government school in the south-east region of Melbourne. She also has extensive experience in small business, which continues today through her involvement in an engineering business in the region.

Peulich has been involved with many political, community and not-for-profit organisations, including:

  • Councillor, City of Moorabbin 1990–1993
  • Director, Marriott Foundation 1999–2003
  • City Chair, Salvation Army Red Shield Appeal
  • Chair, Moorabbin Arts Council
  • Past President, Victorian Parents Children in Day Care Association Inc.
  • Involvement with various community and sporting organisations
  • Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
  • Liberal Party of Australia.[5]

Political careerEdit

In 1989, Inga Peulich joined the Moorabbin branch of the Liberal Party and a year later was elected to the Moorabbin City Council. She was a Liberal member of the Victorian Legislative Assembly from 1992 to 2002, representing the electorate of Bentleigh. She was one of many Liberal members elected in Jeff Kennett's landslide win at the 1992 election. In 1992, Peulich expressed opposition to aspects of the proposed expansion of Westfield Southland.[6]

Peulich lost her seat at the 2002 election,[7] but returned to parliament at the 2006 election, being elected to the Legislative Council as one of the members for South Eastern Metropolitan Region. She was re-elected to the Legislative Council in 2010 and 2014.[8]

Following a varied parliamentary committee career, Peulich was promoted to Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Education and Communities in February 2008. Following the election of the Baillieu Liberal/National Coalition at the 2010 Victorian state election, Peulich was appointed Secretary to Liberal Parliamentary Party and Coalition, and in March 2013, was promoted to Parliamentary Secretary for Education.[9]

In March 2014, Peulich became Cabinet Secretary in the Napthine Ministry.[10]

In 2017, Peulich unsuccessfully opposed the trial of a safe injecting room in Richmond, a harm-minimisation strategy modelled on the successful program in Sydney,[11] and assisted dying or euthanasia legislation.[12]

In September 2017, Peulich was dropped from her scrutiny of government role, but retained her shadow portfolio of Multicultural Affairs.[2]

Controversial stance on LGBT youthEdit

Peulich has raised ire of some sections of Victorian society for her stance against initiatives such as the Safe Schools Program. In a 2017 edition of the Quarterly Essay, Peulich was cited as stating that the programme — designed to keep gender and sexually diverse students safe — was, "frightening", and that it cultivated in children "an isolation from their own families and their own values".[13]

MulticulturalismEdit

In 2007, Peulich employed race blogger Gary Anderton as an adviser. On his blog in 2004, he had published material maligning both Aborigines and his Indian doctor. At the 2006 Victorian state election he had run as the Liberal candidate for the seat of Lyndhurst.[14]

In 2007, Peulich was accused by others in the Liberal Party of being a key supporter of Ken Aldred's attempt to gain Liberal preselelction for the federal electorate of Holt. In 1995, Aldred had tabled documents in the federal parliament linking Mark Leibler, National Chairman of the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council, to an alleged money-laundering scam run by the Israeli intelligence agency, Mossad. The so-called Suriname Papers were later exposed as fakes. When told Aldred had won the Holt ballot, Liebler telephoned Treasurer Peter Costello, and the Prime Minister's office, to demand the result be overturned, and Aldred's endorsement was withdrawn.[15][16]

Following the defeat of the Liberal-National coalition government at the 2014 Victorian State election, Peulich was appointed to the shadow cabinet as the Shadow Minister for Multicultural Affairs and Scrutiny of Government.[17]

In 2018, Peulich labelled Victorian Greens MP Samantha Ratnam a "pig" while Ratnam was speaking in the Victorian parliament about increasing gender and cultural diversity.[18]

MediaEdit

Following the 2010 State election, Peulich was credited with playing a significant role in winning several south-east metropolitan "sandbelt" seats to secure a narrow win for the Victorian Liberal/ National Coalition Government.[19]

In November 2012, she accused Liberal member Geoff Gledhill, and conservative fellow-traveller Tamsin Bearsley, of party disloyalty for failing to vote for her son in his mayoral bid.[20]

In January 2013, a number of articles were run in The Age newspaper, based on dubious e-mails, accusing Peulich of intervening directly on behalf of her son in his mayoral bid.[19] However, the paper was unable to confirm the source and the authenticity of the e-mails, and acknowledged it could not be sure if Peulich sent them.[21]

Family and Personal lifeEdit

When not working in politics Peulich enjoys family activities, community and international affairs, sport and recreation, education and further study, and travel.[5]

Peulich's husband Savo, son Paul, and mother Nena Dosen, all ran as candidates at the 2003 election for the Glen Eira City Council.[9] In 2008, Paul was elected to the Kingston City Council. He was unanimously elected Mayor of Kingston for 2013–2014.[22]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Parliament of Victoria". Parliament of Victoria. Parliament of Victoria. 1 April 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  2. ^ a b Preiss, Benjamin (24 September 2017). "Victorian Coalition shakes up frontbench in preparation for 2018 election". The Age. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  3. ^ "Women Australia". Women of Australia. Women of Australia. 1 April 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  4. ^ "Herald Sun Newspaper". herald Sun. 14 November 2013. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  5. ^ a b "Parliament of Victoria". Parliament of Victoria. 31 March 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  6. ^ http://localhistory.kingston.vic.gov.au/htm/article/243.htm
  7. ^ "Tally Room – Bentleigh". The Tally Room. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  8. ^ "Victorian Electoral Commission". Victorian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  9. ^ "Parliament of Victoria". Parliament of Victoria. 31 March 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  10. ^ "Parliament of Victoria – Members Information – Inga Peulich (South-Eastern Metropolitan)". parliament.vic.gov.au. Retrieved 23 March 2014.
  11. ^ "Inquiry denies proposal for safe injection room in North Richmond". Retrieved 5 January 2018.
  12. ^ "Mammoth debate over euthanasia — why is it taking so long?". Retrieved 5 January 2018.
  13. ^ Law, Benjamin (9 September 2017). Quarterly Essay 67 Moral Panic 101: Equality, Acceptance and the Safe Schools Scandal. Black Inc. ISBN 9781925435887.
  14. ^ Ferguson, John (20 May 2008). "Race blogger Gary Anderton advises Liberal MP". Herald Sun. Retrieved 20 February 2017.
  15. ^ "Victorian Liberal Party decides not to endorse Ken Aldred as its candidate for Holt". Stateline. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 23 March 2007. Retrieved 20 February 2017.
  16. ^ Hannan, Ewan; Wallace, Rick (24 March 2007). "Raking over the ashes". The Australian. Retrieved 20 February 2017.
  17. ^ Smethurst, Annika (17 December 2014). "Opposition Leader Matthew Guy reveals fresh Coalition front bench". Herald Sun. Retrieved 20 February 2017.
  18. ^ "Lib MP's Vic parliament 'pig' jab to Green". SBS News. Retrieved 3 September 2018.
  19. ^ a b Miller, Royce; Fyfe, Melissa (19 January 2013). "Empress of the south-east". The Age. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  20. ^ Miller, Royce; Fyfe, Melissa (19 January 2013). "Meddling MP fuels Liberal row". The Age. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  21. ^ "Star Community". Star Community. 24 January 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  22. ^ Walker, Neil (20 November 2013). "Councillors Back Peulich Power Push". Chelsea-Mordialloc News. issuu. Retrieved 20 February 2017.

External linksEdit

Victorian Legislative Assembly
Preceded by
Ann Barker
Member for Bentleigh
1992–2002
Succeeded by
Rob Hudson