Voices of Goldstein - how it all started

Written by David Williams

During 2020, catastrophic fire and dramatic flood events across the world reinforced the need for urgent action to address climate change impacts. The science was clear but despite our many representations to our MP’s, letters, emails and national protests, our Government was not listening.   Scandal after scandal rocked our nation’s capital as our two major parties slugged it out over question time with no clear pathway forward or a vision and an action plane for a sustainable future.

Our democracy was not working.

In September of 2020 a small group of disenchanted Goldstein voters got together to find a better way forward. Like-minded people were gathered and dozens of Kitchen Table Conversations across the electorate were arranged to gather the views of the community. Dissatisfaction with the current system was clear and strong support emerged for some major issues of concern including-  Strong action on Climate Change, less short term thinking –more strategic long term planning, a Federal ICAC to make politicians accountable, more humane treatment of asylum seekers, tertiary funding, defending the ABC and subsequently making our national parliament a safe place for women to work.

A series of meetings were held to draw together the ideas and views of this growing group and attention turned to addressing these concerns- How do we do democracy better?

Whilst we were all drawn from across the political spectrum, we were united in our aim to make positive change and the concept of supporting a strong, ethical and honest independent parliamentary representative slowly emerged. An independent member would not be constrained to vote along party lines but could be a voice that represented our community and our views.

We made contact with other like- minded groups across the country and learnt from their ideas and experiences. This approach had worked in Warringah and Indi and it could work in Goldstein.  The die was cast and work began in earnest to engage with our whole community. We ran meetings across the electorate, we built the “Voices for Goldstein’ brand through our website, Facebook and Instagram groups and our numbers quickly grew.

We made brightly coloured ‘Voices for Goldstein’ Tee shirts and organised ‘Democracy walks’ in major shopping strips as COVD restrictions allowed.

We established standards of behaviour for ourselves and our potential candidate. We started networking across the electorate and beyond to gather support from key influencers.  We established representative groups to identify and recommend independent candidates and they are now actively seeking suitable people. Final decision on candidate selections will be by all registered members of our group.

We look forward to the selection and induction of the successful candidate shortly.  We will them start preparing for a full blown election campaign leading to a successful result for Goldstein in the forthcoming Federal election.

Ways you can participate in our democracy with VOG:

Talk to friends and colleagues and raise their awareness about these issues and what we can do about.

Nominate a Candidate - Help us find and elect an Independent representative who has ours and the nation's interests at heart.

Come and join our Democracy Walks

Buy a t-shirt or tote bag

Sign up to volunteer

Come to our community events

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Facebook: VoicesofGoldstein Community Group  Twitter @GoldsteinVoices