On November 29 all Victorian Councils go to the polls. In the inner northern suburbs of Melbourne, the Socialist Party (SP) is standing three candidates and is going all out to get our sitting councillor re-elected in the Langridge Ward. Denise Dudley is our candidate in the Melba Ward and Anthony Main in the Nicholls Ward.
Since 2004, the Socialist Party’s Councillor Stephen Jolly has represented residents in Fitzroy, Collingwood, Abbotsford, Clifton Hill, Alphington and South Fairfield. We have used this position over the past four years to fight for and to help organise local people and Stephen has helped put socialism back on the map in this area.
It is vital for local residents and the broader labour movement that Stephen is re-elected. It is also important that the Socialist Party extends its base in the working class communities in the other wards and helps more people to get organised, so that on the council and in the communities we will be able to fight the attacks and cuts that the new council will implement which ever of the main parties holds sway.
The Socialist Party has worked with local residents to save the Community Centre in Collingwood and the St Andrews Kindergarten in Clifton Hill. We have also introduced the most progressive Industrial Relations policy of any Council in Australia. Many large developments have been successfully modified to improve the amenity of local residents thanks to our councillor.
We have worked with the local Koori population for a non-racist approach to public drinking issues on Smith Street. And we have put the interests of public housing tenants on the agenda in Yarra.
The election campaign was successfully launched at a gathering of over 100 people in the Old Colonial pub in Fitzroy last month. Well known comedian Corinne Grant worked with SKA TV to make two short video clips which were premiered at the launch. We have distributed thousands of leaflets throughout the area and the entire electorate has been door knocked.
With the economic crisis likely to lead to State and Federal Governments forcing cuts onto local communities, we need councillors who will campaign and resist these attacks.
But we also need a socialist council as there is an urgent need for a real alternative to parties like Labor and the Greens, who will use the crisis in the capitalist market to try to justify cuts in community services.
The Socialist Party has helped many workers in Yarra over the years, now we are asking for your support. Join this important fight to defend and extend our position on Yarra Council.
If you would like to attend our election night party or help in any way in the final days of the campaign please contact our National Office.
By Socialist Party reporters