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Sussan Ley on sexism within the office, flying planes and dancing shoeless



When she arrived within the city of Thargomindah in western Queensland, she knocked on a slicing contractor’s door and stated: “I am right here to fly your airplane”.

The person replied, “You?”

“He did not imagine I may even fly a airplane,” Ley stated.

She met her future husband within the shacks of Thargomindah, earlier than they’d three kids and settled on a household farm in northeastern Victoria.

On the age of 30, nonetheless working full-time on the farm and with a one-year-old baby, Ley began learning economics at college earlier than incomes two masters levels and dealing on the Australian Taxation Workplace.

She was elected to the Liberal Social gathering in Farrer’s seat in 2001, successful it from the Nation following the retirement of former deputy prime minister Tim Fischer.

Sussan Ley must now work closely with Liberal leader Peter Dutton.

Sussan Ley should now work carefully with Liberal chief Peter Dutton.Credit score:Alex Ellinghausen

However not all is easy crusing. After serving as well being minister within the Abbott and Turnbull ministries, she was compelled to resign in 2017 when it was revealed she had bought a Gold Coast property on a taxpayer-funded journey. support.

Ley, now 60, stated she may turn into “bitter and upset” after being faraway from the cupboard, however determined to double down on her constituency job.

“I went to the again desk which is sweet for the soul. And I used to be fortunate sufficient to be again within the Morison cupboard,” she stated.

“I settle for that politics can deal you some robust arms… However for me it was saying: ‘Sure, what do I do now so as to add worth to my function? ?’”

She has additionally proven a troublesome path throughout this era, threatening to vote for a ban on the stay sheep export commerce.

She attributes this resilience to her upbringing. Born in Nigeria to British dad and mom, Ley spent her early years within the United Arab Emirates, the place her father labored as a spy for MI6.

On the age of 10, she was despatched to a boarding college within the UK whereas her dad and mom remained within the UAE. After three years, the entire household moved to Australia, the place her dad and mom purchased a interest farm outdoors Toowoomba.

After the household moved to Canberra, Ley turned a rebellious highschool scholar and confessed to being a punk. She walks round with out sneakers, black lipstick, spiky purple hair, a canine collar, and a nostril ring related to a razor blade in her ear.

Susan Ley was elected to parliament in 2001.

Susan Ley was elected to parliament in 2001.Credit score:ALEX MASSEY

It was this rebellious character that led her so as to add an ‘s’ to her title as a younger grownup.

“It was not fashionable with my mom on the time. She nonetheless thinks it needs to be eliminated,” Ley stated.

Folks near Ley describe her as “spontaneous,” one of the laid-back politicians within the federal parliament.

On many nights, she will be discovered on the entrance bar on the pubs in her constituency chatting with the locals.


“Taverns are the place you hear knowledge from odd individuals,” she stated.

Sometimes, Ley can also be seen dancing bare on the pub.

“Not for a few years,” she insisted. “However, like, who should not dance with out sneakers?”

Whereas the challenges going through girls might have modified since she confronted rampant sexism within the office within the Nineteen Eighties, Ley believes it’s as we speak’s “limitless problem.” least”.

“There are nonetheless expectations and views about girls that folks don’t specific as a result of they’re conscious that they’re restricted from expressing them,” she stated.

“However possibly they nonetheless hold them. And possibly they nonetheless hold them at work. And possibly they convey these views to girls irrationally, and so they really feel it. So it is totally different, but it surely’s nonetheless a problem. “

After being elected Deputy Chief of the Liberals following the Coalition’s defeat on the elections in Might, Ley desires to make use of her numerous life experiences to assist the occasion higher join with girls across the nation. . However she has positioned herself with the particular accountability of reclaiming the six seats which have fallen into the arms of impartial feminine teals.

She accepts that points reminiscent of integrity, local weather and the financial system play an enormous function in girls leaving the occasion on the election. However she additionally warned in opposition to treating girls as a homogenous political group.


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