I grew up in country NSW, on the mid-north coast, and moved to Lismore in 1999 to study arts, law and teaching at Southern Cross University.
After graduating I worked at Trinity Catholic College before travelling overseas. On returning to Lismore I was appalled to find that Coal Seam Gas drilling was going ahead in our beautiful region. That was the catalyst me joining The Greens and dedicating myself to the Gas Field Free Northern Rivers campaign.
In 2013 I moved to Sydney to work as Policy Advisor for Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham. In 2014 I returned to Lismore to work as a Lock the Gate regional coordinator and was intimately involved in the Bentley Blockade.
When working in state Parliament I was shocked by the level of corruption in both Labor and the Liberal National Party as revealed at the ICAC hearings.
For too long big corporations, mining companies and developers have bankrolled the major parties’ election campaigns, opening the way for deals, paybacks and corruption.
It is time for a new way of doing politics, where politicians represent their communities, not vested interests.
Top 3 issues
- Declaring the Northern Rivers Gasfield Free and promoting renewable energy. I am intent on seeing gas licences cancelled and replaced with a future based on clean energy, sustainable agriculture and tourism. There are more jobs in renewable energy than dirty coal and gas. Gas mining poses significant threats to people’s health as well as agriculture, tourism and our way of life on the northern rivers.
- Properly funded hospitals and health care; not just capital works but proper staffing levels and preventative health programs. The National Party MP stood by when his government slashed $3 billion from health in 2012, and said nothing when his federal colleagues introduced the Medicare co-payment, which would impact on emergency departments. People in regional areas have poorer health results than those in the cities, and we deserve better local advocacy on health.
- Keeping public services in public hands so they remain as services for the public, not for profit. Not selling our electricity poles and wires, defending TAFE against privatisation, and ensuring full funding of the Gonski reforms so all young people have access to quality education and training.
The first local issue I will campaign on
I’ve spent the last three years campaigning to protect the health of our community from the impacts of coal seam gas mining. People feel betrayed by the lack of representation and want a member who is prepared to stand up for the community. On too many issues we have been ignored; on health funding cuts, TAFE privatisation, lack of public transport, cuts to housing support and social services. I want to change the way we do politics and make sure our community has a strong voice in state Parliament.