Noni Hazlehurst inducted into Logies Hall of Fame, delivers epic speech 31



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Beloved television presenter Noni Hazlehurst wowed the audience with her speech last night when she was inducted into the Logies Hall of Fame.

The 62-year-old was only the second woman ever to accept the award and took her chance to highlight that issue and a number of others while she was on stage.

While most people know Noni as the kind-hearted presenter on Play School and Better Homes and Gardens, she proved she isn’t afraid to deliver a healthy dose of the cold hard truth.

She spoke about how the media focussing on mostly ‘bad news’ stories only fuels people’s anxiety and fear about the state of the world and the future.

“I suspect that almost none of us here watching is immune from the growing incidence of depression, anxiety and suicide,” Hazlehurst said.

“We all know people who are struggling, we may be ourselves and too many of our kids are.

“We’re all living under a heavy and constant cloud of negativity … I think it’s because we’re surrounded by bad news and examples of our … human behaviour.

“So here is my pitch: I’d love a channel that features nothing but stories that inspire us and reassure us and our children that there are good things happening and good people in the world.

“I know it’s a lot to ask for. But at the very least, a show that tries to redress this overwhelming imbalance, that counters bad news with good that encourages optimism not pessimism, that restores our empathy and love for our fellow human beings and the Earth, that redefines reality, that heals our hearts.

“And by the way — I’m available.”

She also talked about her time on Play School and how much of an influence television has on young children.

“Once I got over my own self-consciousness and self-judgment and started to relax I realised [children were] far more demanding than any audience of adults. Three- and four-year-olds have the best bullshit detectors,” she said.

“For many decades Play School has been a safe haven for small children in an increasingly complex media landscape and world.

“I started to see a world through the preschoolers’ eyes to see how free and unafraid they are to just be. They haven’t yet been conditioned.

“But also how easily frightened and overwhelmed they are. How easily abused, and particularly how empathetic they are. No child is born a bigot.”

Her speech draw applause from the crowd and quickly appeared online where people praised her for her honesty.

Noni also mentioned the fact that she is only the second woman ever to recieve the Hall of Fame induction and highlighted the need for more diversity in Australian television – referring to the fact that The Project presenter Waleed Aly and SBS news reader Lee Lin Chin copped a lot of backlash over their nominations for the Gold Logie.

“The fact that I’m only the second woman to be given this honour is merely a reflection of the prevailing guard — as is the suggestion from some quarters that the eligibility of esteemed colleagues Waleed Aly and Lee Lin Chin going for gold is questionable,” she said.

Waleed went on to win the Gold Logie later in the night, making fun of the fact that people had tried to dismiss his nomination.

“Do not adjust your sets … there’s nothing wrong with the picture. I’m sure there’s an Instagram filter you can use to return things to normal,” he joked.

“This is happening, it’s true. Finally a male presenter on commercial TV has won the Gold Logie.”

Aly told the crowd about a man called Dimitri who encouraged him to take home the prize.

“He came up to me and through gritted teeth commanded me to claim this award tonight. This really, really mattered to him. This really meant something to him,” Aly said.

“It matters to them for a particular reason. That reason was brought home shudderingly not so long ago when someone who is in this room — and I’m not going to use the name they use in this industry — came up to me and said: ‘I really hope you win. My name is Mustafa. But I can’t use that name because I won’t get a job.’ And it matters to people like that that I am here.

“To Dimitri and Mustafa and all the other people with unpronounceable names like Waleed, I want to say one thing: that is that I am incredibly humbled you would even think to invest in me that way.

“But I’m also incredibly saddened by it because the truth is you deserve more numerous and more worthy avatars than that.

“I don’t know if and when that’s going to happen but if tonight means anything … that is the Australian public, our audience, as far as they’re concerned there is absolutely no reason that can’t change.”

Do you agree with Noni’s speech? Do we need to see more optimistic news out there? Are you glad that Waleed won the Gold Logie?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. Absolutely! ! My 3 children , all in their 30’s never watch the news on tv , way too depressing mum they say. It’s all doom & gloom, they have better things to think about. Having saying that they do keep up online , all three have a political opinion , but tv news or current affairs programs not ontheir agenda.

    2 REPLY
    • That’s my opinion as well. TV news and current affairs programs do nothing but report doom and gloom stories which are just so distressing. I’d love to watch programs of an uplifting nature!

    • Definitely agree with Noni, we are constantly shrouded by a cloud of fear, the negativity and horror we and our children are subjected to is disgraceful and there is no need for it, sure we need to know what is going on, but we don’t need the full graphics being shoved in our faces.

  2. Of course so many with children switch of the news and adults too. Would love a chanel like she suggests with some happy stories.

  3. Congratulations Waleed a very articulate and deserving host Well Done!

  4. Waleed received this honor because he is the best at what he does… other reason he is intelligent, articulate, and not afraid to tell it straight……no not put labels on people because of race color etc it is demeaning to their craft and expertese congratulations for a jon well done m durno

  5. Yes all the doom and gloom is getting to people down.

  6. i fully agree with Noni. the media has a huge responsibility in keeping a balance in what they report. they rarely do. its all sensationalism. a good example: we are fearful of anything middle eastern because all we are presented with are the activities of a handful of lunatics. we rarely see positive stories involving the muslim people. i would personally like to meet them as they really are. it would be nice to think the media would take nonis words on board but its probably wise not hold ones breath.

  7. I missed the Logies, but respect and admire her words. There is so much expectations expected these days and a lot of closed depression sufferers. We need more uplifting shows and for the media to be aware of signs of depression in our own backyard. I admire Noni for bringing it to our attention as there are a lot of people who would prefer to ignore. Too hard.
    Hopefully there can be an awareness hour on the TV, where people can discuss and learn before the signs are too late. I would watch Noni.

  8. Hear, hear to the call for more positive, uplifting and inspiring stories! Well said!
    Also very glad to read Waleed Ali’s comments.
    Thank you for the positive report on startsat60.

  9. Absolutely agree! I am watching the news on TV and reading newspapers less and less often. Why? Because it makes me ashamed and frightened. The picture of our world that they portray is a very, very nasty one. One which is out of control. One which is filled with nothing but hatred and violence. To a large degree this may be what is evolving, but I honestly believe if we all change our attitudes, focus on the good, reward good behaviour with recognition and applaud, then not only will we all be happier and feel more content, then things might actually begin to change. Or maybe I just go and stick my head back in the sand again.
    Go Noni. Let’s get this new station happening.

  10. Well done Noni, congratulations on your acceptance into the Hall of Fame…..and I agree we are surrounded by such negativity every day ..actually I have made a conscious decision, I have a Gloom Free day every Friday I don’t watch the news, buy a paper, check news on line, watch news on TV ……the alternative is I invite a friend to have coffee, watch a DVD movie, go to the cinema, read a book, set up a jigsaw puzzle, have a glass of wine with girlfriends…. It would certainly be a winner to have a TV show about all the good things that are around us ….again congratulations .

  11. Most definitely! I do not watch the news anymore…it’s too bloody depressing! I prefer Foxtel, Netflix etc…..because I can choose what I want to watch. I know I’d watch a channel that lifted my emotions and made me feel great, instead of hearing/watching so many terrible things going on in the world…so many programs about war, fighting, killing etc….! We need a Happy Channel, with laughter and feel good stories to lift our spirits and make us want to live life….not lock ourselves away from society! Fingers crossed!

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