|About Dr Mal Washer|
Mal Washer was born in 1945 and grew up on the family farm at Capel, in the south west of Western Australia. He completed his Bachelor of Medicine at the University of Western Australia and started practising medicine in the northern suburbs of Perth in 1972.
Aside from medicine, Mal is passionate about science, innovation and the environment, and this is reflected in his appointments in Parliament:
He is also Vice Chair of the Population Development Group, Chair of the Drug Law Reform; and is also involved in the Fertility Preservation Parliamentary Support Group, the Disability Support Group, the Diabetes Support Group, the Schizophrenia Support Group and the Prostate Cancer Support Group.
Mal is dedicated in bringing about the Sustainable Cities proposals put forward by his Environmental and Heritage Committee. As one of the most urbanised countries in the world, with water shortages, transport congestion and high energy demands, Australia must take action now to address how our cities might develop in the future.
The committee's vision is for Australian cities that are vibrant and healthy - environmentally, socially and economically. The Committee has recently tabled a report inquiring into climate change and environmental impacts on coastal communities.
Through his previous involvement with the Science and Innovation Committee Mal has the knowledge and insight on development of sustainable clean energy sources, enabling him to effectively contribute to legislation governing its development in this country - eg. Renewable Energy (Electricity) Amendment Bill 2006, Energy Efficiencies Opportunities Amendments Bill 2006.
As previous Chair, now Vice Chair, of the Population Development Group he is committed to Australia meeting the Millennium Development Goals. In 2000, 189 governments, including Australia, committed to halving world poverty by 2015 through these 7 goals:
Lack of sexual and reproductive health information and services continues to be a major impediment to the attainment of these goals.
"As parliamentarians we can help improve the lives of the poor in our region by focusing our attention on the issues. We are aware that Australia has some way to go in meeting best practice standards for sexual and reproductive health particularly with our regard to our support for access to safe abortion but we are encouraged that our aid program is starting to address some of these concerns"
His extensive medical and scientific knowledge has enabled him to successfully campaign for Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer research to be conducted in this country, ensuring Australia's position as one of the world leaders in scientific and medical advancement. This research has enormous potential in understanding and treating many incurable debilitating diseases and injuries, and by having this research done here Australians will be the recipients of any advances made.
As a doctor, an area of great concern to Mal is the obesity epidemic in this country. Obesity causes a multitude of chronic diseases such heart disease and diabetes. It is estimated that 1 in 2 Australians born today will develop type 2 diabetes as a result of lifestyle factors such as obesity. For the first time in this country our children will have a shorter life expectancy, around 5 years shorter, than we have. The effects on our society economically and socially could be catastrophic if we do not address this issue now. Mal is a strong advocate of programs such as the Active After School Communities program which is run in his electorate and the Healthy Eating grants for schools.
Over the years and into the future Mal has fought for and worked with the community to secure funding and opportunities in many areas of our local community.
Mal and Nola have two grandchildren: Robert, 13, and James, 7.