Skip navigation

In just one week, my HECS petition received 190,000 signatures

In this newsletter, how one little petition becomes a rallying point for people across the country. Plus Relay for Life success and announcing our next Town Hall.

This is how independents get things done.

Two weeks ago, I wrote to you about my concerns regarding the HECS indexation system - having received lots of feedback about it recently at my Pop-Up Offices, and through the Kooyong Cost of Living survey.

With the Budget around the corner, I decided to start a petition and build a public case for fixing HECS debts.

It took off! After one day 15,000 people had signed the petition; after three days 80,000 had signed it. And, after a week, we have more than 190,000 signatures, making it the largest single call to fix HECS debts ever.

2.9 million Australians have HECS debts. The way the system is indexed really bites at times of high inflation. It doesn’t seem fair - the government shouldn’t be charging more than it pays in interest on student debts. The system particularly disadvantages women who take time off for unpaid parental leave, and it’s making it much harder for young people to get home loans.

Armed with the first 90 000 signatures on the petition, I met with the Education Minister and made the case to him about why he should fix HECS debts.


I’ll be keeping the pressure up on the government. I know it has many competing priorities in the May Budget; receiving this record-breaking petition about fixing HECS debts will have focussed its attention on this issue. In the meanwhile; please do sign the petition and spread the word.

Also in this newsletter; standing alongside youth taking action on climate change, fundraising to fight cancer at Relay for Life, and look who’s coming to Kooyong for our next Town Hall meeting.

Talking about climate at our Kooyong Town Hall

Last Thursday, Zoe Daniel and I hosted Anjali Sharma - a student and climate action campaigner — at another Kooyong Town Hall. 

Anjali explained her campaign for a legislated duty of care - a law requiring the government to consider the effects its decisions have on future generations. We had attendees from as far away from Castlemaine, and took questions from constituents as young as 8-years-old and as wise and experienced as 80-years-old.

If you’re wondering when our next Town Hall will be, you don’t need to wonder any longer…

A very special Town Hall with Senator David Pocock

I'm excited to announce that my next Town Hall will be a Q and A with a very special guest, Senator David Pocock

Senator Pocock is the former Wallabies captain turned Independent Senator for the ACT. Since his election in May 2022, he has shown the power of Independents, using his influential vote in the Senate to make sure Australia is taking stronger climate action and addressing the cost-of-living crisis.

Over the past six months, David and I have been working closely on restoring integrity in politics, particularly when it comes to lobbying. 

Late last year, I introduced my #CleanUpPoliticsAct. Lobbyists representing everything from big coal to the big banks are undermining the government's efforts to take real climate action, manage the cost-of-living crisis, and regulate gambling and tobacco companies. 

Thousands of well-resourced lobbyists roam the halls in Canberra, secretly meeting with Ministers to influence government policies so they favour vested interests, not the public interest. 

Yet Australia has some of the weakest lobbying regulations in the developed world. 

With Senator Pocock's support, we have already managed to secure an inquiry into lobbying. We won’t rest until we finally shine a light on lobbying in this country- and close the revolving door between government and industry.  

Book here to join us and ask us about the #CleanUpPoliticsAct or anything else. See you there!

(And if you can’t make it in person, this event will also be livestreamed. Follow the booking prompts to receive a viewing link.)

Relay for Life!

Nothing brings the community of Kooyong together like the Relay for Life!

This annual event raises vital funds for the Cancer Council’s research, prevention and support services.

Our local event at Auburn High School last Saturday, March 16th was a terrific success. Our team was gloriously led by the indefatigable Julie, Rosemary, Bernie and Bill — thank you to you four wonderful people for your hours of effort and support, and to the many generous supporters of the Relay.

What’s On With Mon

I’m back to Canberra next week- with offshore gas drilling, scams protections, support benefits and HECS on the agenda! I’d love to see you out in the electorate on my return.

Come down and chat with me as I host another Pop-Up Office at Camberwell Station on April 16, from 7.30am to 8.30am. I'll be ready to answer your questions, take on any feedback that you might have or discuss policy issues. See you there!

Come down and chat with me as I host another Pop-Up Office at Maling Rd on April 19 from 12:00-1:00pm. I'll be ready to answer your questions, take on any feedback that you might have or discuss policy issues. See you there!

Wishing you all a safe and relaxing Easter break,

Continue Reading

Read More