I hope that you managed to spend some time with family and friends over the holidays, during these very challenging times.
While I took a short break after resigning from my job at the Royal Children’s Hospital, our campaign team was hard at work getting ready to hit the ground running.
Corflutes (durable signs) are popping up all over the electorate, from Kew to Glen Iris, from Hawthorn to Balwyn and Mont Albert. Our aim is to put up 500 corflutes by the end of January. Will you please host a corflute on your front fence?
In late-breaking and exciting news, we are on the cusp of securing a campaign headquarters at a prominent intersection. As a community campaign we cannot afford to book out massive electronic billboards like Josh Frydenberg does but, with your help, we can turn our office windows into giant glass billboards!
On a personal note, like so many of you, my holiday was greatly affected by the pandemic, with three generations of family members contracting Covid. It has been a difficult time, made worse by the mismanagement of PCR testing and the scarcity and cost of rapid antigen tests. Frequent rule changes for quarantine and isolation are driven by systemic failures rather than the best available science.
Having been employed in a senior role in a major public hospital until very recently, I can tell you that the increase in case numbers – and the arrival of a new, more infectious variant – was predicted by the experts months ago. Overloaded ambulance services and hospitals and interruptions to our food supply were also very predictable. More recently I’m hearing from so many people who have had difficulty accessing booster doses and vaccinations for 5-11 year olds — a real worry with the start of the school year almost upon us. We all expect more from our government. This election is your chance to vote for something better.
Back from holidays and with my batteries fully charged, I’ve started meeting with groups and individuals across the community. As a community Independent, it’s so important to build a picture of the issues important to the whole of Kooyong — it’s also fascinating, and invigorating.
People are telling me that they want climate change action this decade – not 20 years from now! If we start acting on climate change now, rather than kick the problem down the road for another decade, we can deliver a strong, innovative and clean economy that sets up our children and grandchildren for a safe, healthy and prosperous future.
I’ve also begun expert consultations, meeting last week with advisors to independent member for Indi Helen Haines to learn more about her bill for an Australian Federal Integrity Commission. We need a strong independent Integrity Commission to restore trust in government. Despite promising an Integrity Commission at the last federal election, Josh Frydenberg’s government has failed to deliver. Moreover, I learnt that the government’s stalled proposal won’t have the powers to address almost all of the rorting and corruption we’ve seen in recent years. Kooyong deserves better.
I look forward to seeing you all online, in the streets of Kooyong, or in our soon to be opened campaign office. It’s going to be a wonderfully exciting year. Together we’re going to make the change we want to see. Kooyong’s climate is changing!
In the meantime, stay well.