Yvonne Chapman

Interviewed by
Robin Sullivan
May 09 2011
Yvonne Chapman
Time Summary Keywords
00:00:00 Yvonne Chapman discusses her family and early childhood. She describes her early employment at a paper mill until she married and moved to Kallangur.
00:02:09 Yvonne Chapman discusses the impacts of her early life experiences on her political views. She explains how she became involved in politics following the election of Gough Whitlam. Gough Whitlam
00:06:04 Yvonne Chapman explains how she became a member of both the Liberal and National parties. She discusses her time in Council as a Liberal member and joining the National Party after she was approached by Joh Bjelke-Petersen. She discusses her experiences in local government and comments on the difference between state and local government. Joh Bjelke-Petersen, local government
00:09:06 Yvonne Chapman discusses her main achievements and explains her open door policy in dealing with the general public.
00:11:31 Yvonne Chapman explains how she arranged for the removal of doors from the public toilets in a park in Petrie. She speaks on the media coverage of this event. homosexuality, media
00:19:18 Yvonne Chapman discusses how she was invited by Joh Bjelke-Petersen to move into state politics. Brian Austin, Cabinet, Coalition, Don Lane, Joh Bjelke-Petersen, Rob Akers, Terry White
00:23:05 Yvonne Chapman discusses her campaign strategies and talks briefly about losing her first campaign in the seat of Murrumba. campaign strategy, Joe Kruger
00:24:20 Yvonne Chapman discusses her initial Address in Reply in 1983 and the ways in which she tried to protect the role of wife and mother throughout her time in parliament. Welfare Services, women
00:25:42 Yvonne Chapman discusses the main issues she dealt with as Minister for Welfare Services, Youth and Ethnic Affairs and talks about the difficulties of the portfolio and compares these to the Transport portfolio. child sexual abuse, Transport, Welfare Services
00:30:35 Yvonne Chapman discusses her professional relationships with her directors general and on the role of the department with regards to policy ideas and development. She recalls how as minister she adopted some children from Chile. adoption, Alan Pettigrew, directors general, relationship with public service
00:34:10 Yvonne Chapman recalls the introduction of a policy that would only provide welfare payments for the first child of single mother families. Welfare Services
00:35:45 Yvonne Chapman explains how she became the first woman minister. She recalls how she was called into Joh Bjelke-Petersen's office and the subsequent press conference to announce her as the first woman minister. Joh Bjelke-Petersen, media, women
00:39:50 Yvonne Chapman discusses the challenges of being a woman within the ministry and recalls how she requested a washing machine during a cabinet meeting. Cabinet, women
00:43:20 Yvonne Chapman discusses the events leading to the Joh Bjelke-Petersen leadership spill. Joh Bjelke-Petersen, leadership, Mike Ahern, Russell Cooper
00:47:13 Yvonne Chapman discusses her time as Minister for Transport and explains why Joh Bjelke-Petersen was so good for Queensland. Brian Austin, Don Lane, infrastructure, Joh Bjelke-Petersen, Lionel Powell, Mike Ahern, state development, Transport
00:51:40 Yvonne Chapman outlines her impressions of Russell Cooper as a leader. leadership, Russell Cooper
00:53:04 Yvonne Chapman discusses the tough decisions she made and the threats made to her during her time as minister. She recalls a confrontation with a member of the public at church. child protection, child sexual abuse, domestic violence, health, Joh Bjelke-Petersen, personal vilification
00:55:36 Yvonne Chapman outlines the compassion she has for others and how she was able to help people through policy change.
00:56:52 Yvonne Chapman explains how after leaving state politics she returned to local government following a court case between the family panelbeating business and the Council. local government
1:00:31 Interview ends.
Further reading: 
John McCulloch, The legislators: women in state and federal parliaments, Central Queensland University Press, Rockhampton, 2005
Catherine Jenkins, No ordinary lives: pioneering women in Australian politics, Australian Scholarly Publishing, North Melbourne, 2008