Paula Wriedt, a Tasmanian Member of Parliament who attempted suicide in August 2008, resigned on 18 January 2009. According to her media statement
“I have made a significant recovery since my hospitalisation in August, but I believe it is in my best interests, and the interests of my family, to concentrate on improving my health away from the daily pressures of being a member of Parliament.
“This illness has had a significant impact on my life.
“The many demands I faced last year, on both a professional and personal level, meant I neglected to take stock of my health until it was too late.
“During this time, I made a mistake by forming an inappropriate relationship with a member of my staff. This had significant implications for the families involved, and I am not proud of my actions.
“I deeply regret the hurt that has been caused by this.”
She goes on to speak positively of undertaking meaningful work outside of politics. It is hoped that Paula does not feel obliged to follow other politicians into promoting depression support services. For most Australians Paula Wriedt will be associated with her affair and suicide attempt. Tasmanians should remember her as a good parliamentarian, as mentioned by the current Premier David Bartlett (who is only slightly older than Paula at 41), and for her achievements in the education portfolio.
Other post concerning Paula’s situation are available by searching for “Wriedt” in the field below.