The Nepean Greens Announce its Preference Distribution Suggestions for Penrith, Mulgoa and Londonderry in 2015 NSW State Election

Media Release – 16 March 2015

The Greens campaigns for Penrith, Mulgoa and Londonderry have made the decision in the 2015 election to recommend to Greens voters that they number every box in the Lower House.

These decisions were based on a local group assessment of the policies and actions of each party running in each seat. Key were their commitment to sustainable environmental protection, maintenance of public infrastructure and attitudes towards community diversity and equality.

“It is vital to remember that voters can vote in whichever order they like” stated campaign co-ordinator for all three campaigns, Michelle Tormey. “These decisions were not easy. We take such discussions very seriously, as we have in the past recommended no preference distribution in the Lower House.” Tormey added “It was considered important this time, however, that we made a statement about the ability of other parties to contribute positively to the goals and outcomes that the Greens desire in the community”.

It is for these reasons that the Greens will be recommending voters to give their second vote to the ALP in all three seats. “It has been encouraging to see the ALP change their position on CSG and on the development of the ADI site” said Greens candidate for Londonderry, Shane Gorman. “It shows to us that they have shied away from the mistakes made in past governments.”

“Their commitment to protection of the Cumberland woodland and to oppose the overdevelopment proposed for Fernhill is important to the Greens for Mulgoa campaign.” said Kingsley Liu, the Greens’ candidate for Mulgoa. “We are also happy about the ALP’s more recent commitment to community diversity, shown in supporting recent community centre development applications in Kemps Creek.”

“We also wanted, with our preferences recommendations, to make a statement about the Liberal Government and their terrible policies in relation to the environment, ripping money away from institutions like TAFE and selling of public assets.” stated Tormey. “That’s why we are recommending that voters place them as low as possible on the ticket.”

In the light of that recommendation, a decision has also been made in all three seats to consider how each minor party and independent candidate conducts themselves in important community issues. It is for this reason that the Christian Democratic Party has been placed last in Mulgoa and Londonderry. “We are concerned about the statements made by the CDP leader, Fred Nile, in terms of important social issues like respect for diversity of sexuality, culture and religion” said Gorman. “They represent a far right vision for NSW that is not in keeping with Greens’ philosophies, nor even in keeping with our tolerant and welcoming society of 2015.”

In Penrith, the decision about placing recommendations according to party attitudes and policies were broader, with the Australia First Party and Jackie Kelly present on the ticket. “We in the Greens are appalled and disgusted with the borderline neo-fascist policies of Australia First.” stated Mark O’Sullivan, Greens candidate for Penrith. “This is why we will recommend to our voters to place them last. We also find recent statements about Islamic members of the community by May Spencer of the CDP to be repugnant and out of line with a contemporary, welcoming Australia that does not discriminate along the lines of culture and religion.”

O’Sullivan also stated that Greens voters will be asked to place independent candidate Jackie Kelly after the Liberal Party on their voting tickets. “Our members are most concerned with statements made by Kelly in a community meeting convened by her as well as her close association with extremist Penrith councillor Marcus Cornish. It is disappointing that a former Federal parliamentarian like Jackie has decided to not make a stand against the kind of anti-Islamic bigotry that we have seen recently in our community.” Other issues, according to O’Sullivan, were also at play in the decision. “Jackie was an integral part of the Howard Liberal Government, who oversaw a swathe of negative changes in the fabric of Australian society as well as negative impacts on the environment. She can’t be trusted to reverse her positions from those years and has already shown that she thinks more roads are the answer to every local transport problem.”

Penrith HTV

Mulgoa HTV

Londonderry HTV

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Shane Gorman – Greens for Londonderry

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G’Day I’m Shane Gorman! I’m a 22 year old university student living in Emu Plains. Ive lived in greater western Sydney for over 18 years now and will fondly admit that I find it rather difficult to feel at home anywhere else than in the west.

My parents, like many across Sydney make the hard decision to leave their lives behind in Ireland with the intent to provide my sister and myself a better life with more opportunities and safety than they had. My father is a hardworking and big hearted labourer who has worked across western Sydney building infrastructure for housing developments since the 1990s. My mother is a passionate and hardy mental health case worker and looks after a number of disadvantaged and struggling individuals across the community.

My sister on the other hand is five years my junior and is studying hard for her HSC with the proud aspiration of becoming a paediatric specialist, herself along with many her age and my hardworking parents have inspired me to take this rather daunting dive into politics at such an young age. Most of the people I have met in western Sydney are not unalike my own family and for too long now have I grown up watching governments come and go in both this state and across the country failing to ever mean what they say and perform what they promise; often at the cost of the hard working and hard done by middle and lower class of suburban and rural Australia.

I am currently enrolled in Historical and Political thought with a major in social ecology at UWS Penrith with the intent of being able to better understand my community, Australian society and how we as a nation interact between one another and with our environment. If its anything I can take away from my studies thus far is just how intricate and far reaching our interaction with the environment truly is. How a sustainable approach to development and the everyday functioning of our community not only provides vast employment opportunity but is downright vital to the continuing prosperity of the nation, the state and specifically greater western Sydney.

Aside from my studies I have been working part time in retail sales in both Penrith and Mount Druitt, some of you might recognise me solely for this reason. My five years employed in the local area has given me the invaluable opportunity to meet and get to know countless individuals from all across the community, both professionally and intimately. If it’s anything I have learned not just from my time working in the area but also growing up and going to school in greater western Sydney is that the people are well and truly unique in the sense that they so proudly represent the common experience of many Australians across the country on such a huge scale. They are hardworking, down to earth and often faced with hardships handed down by supposed leaders past and present. Despite this notion, they continue to carry on due to an unwavering sense of community coupled with an undefeatable sense of humour and easy goingness which often leaves me jaw dropped.

The people of greater western Sydney seemed to have really cracked what’s important in life, they value the little things, they value family, friendship and honesty, they are genuine people and I am proud of my upbringing and proud to be a part of this awesome community. That being said this community doesn’t deserve what it has been dealt for years, this honest and hardworking community deserves better and it has for a long time. I can’t wait to get to know you all better.

Contact: 0419 022 483

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Mark O’Sullivan Greens for Penrith

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Mark O’Sullivan has been a resident of the Nepean region for most of his life and has a passionate belief in the present and future of the region.  He thinks that the residents of Penrith deserve to have a clear plan that incorporates economic and housing growth whilst preserving the natural features that attract people to the area in the first place.

Mark believes that Penrith has a bright economic future as a significant regional centre and should be working towards providing sustainable, long term jobs for people living in the region.  There should also be good planning for that growth, in terms of better public transport for getting around the Penrith area as well as going into Sydney. There should also be better facilities for those who wish to use their bikes in the area.

It is also important that Penrith has representation that doesn’t involve political parties who have long and questionable relationships with land developers and real estate agents, who look after their own interests before looking after the interests of the people of NSW. The Greens are dedicated to clean politics and Mark would like to continue that principle going.

Penrith also deserves a better advocate for issues that involve their daily lives – such as better funding for our public schools – especially for children with special needs, which has continued to be neglected by both major parties and better services for those in our community that need support – another part of our community that seems to be forgotten, especially a Liberal Government dedicated to making more money for their rich mates.

Finally, Penrith needs to send a message to Macquarie St that selling off our electricity infrastructure is not ok – we shouldn’t be putting our poles and wires into the hands of companies whose only interest is making money.  Selling it off, just so most of that money can go to providing the Liberal electorates of the North and North West of Sydney a railway line and new harbour crossing is not sound management of our state assets. Nor will it be good for the long term goal of having more renewable energy solutions adding power to our main electricity grid.

Mark O’Sullivan

Contact: 0410 613 909

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What Exactly is the ‘Penrith way of life’ Councillor Cornish?

Media Release on Friday 31st October, 2014 by Greens member and candidate for Londonderry at the 2015 State Election, Shane Gorman.

Greens Candidate for Londonderry Shane Gorman commends a recent Penrith City Council decision to support a complying development for a prayer hall on Mamre Road, Kemps Creek.

North Ward Penrith City Councillor Marcus Cornish believes that the building of mosques in the Penrith area will be an irreversible change to the fabric of life in Penrith. Well certainly according to Marcus Cornish, but since growing up, going through school and working with the community for a number of years now, I am at a loss to what exactly he is suggesting?

Perhaps he is suggesting that increased traffic flow towards Kemps creek might be the problem? or that Penrith is already overcrowded with places of religious worship? However i get the impression that Marcus doesn’t want Islam to be a part of the big picture that makes up the Penrith way of life.

It is clear that Australia is having growing pains in the form of ongoing cultural tension between Islamic and Anglo Australians. It’s delusional to think that inaction and idealism is an effective way of dealing with such a divisive challenge, but neither is outcasting and all but completely oppressing such a large part of our community.

Penrith desperately needs real and open dialogue on some of the complex challenges we face TOGETHER as a community. What we don’t need is the perpetuation of hate, intolerance and bigotry. Islam doesn’t threaten Penrith, in fact the diversity it brings strengthens it. What threatens Penrith is Councillor Cornishs’ insensitive words, which divide and continues to stir intolerance. Councillor Cornish seems to have Islam confused with religious, ideological and political extremism. Which along with his generalisations, actually threaten our community.

Councillor Cornish is not opposing the construction of a mosque, he is opposing the reality that Islam; much like Christianity, Atheism,Sikhism and Buddhism, is a part of the Penrith way of life, while illegitimising the importance of Muslims in our community by doing so. Consider for a moment if Councillor Cornish was opposing the construction of a Church? He has crossed the line between just representation and actively oppressing those within our community.

Councillor Cornish is no doubt a good person and I have seen him stand up for Penrith on some very important matters such as the Fernhill development, however he has failed to consider the diversity of the Penrith community and it’s culture as it is now in 2014.

I ask Councillor Cornish to accept Penrith for what and who it has become, it has changed a lot over the years and will continue to change for years to come. Lastly I also ask Councillor Cornish to remember: “Hate begets hate” And hate is not part of the Penrith way of life.

Shane Gorman.

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Kingsley Liu Greens for Mulgoa

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A STRONG VOICE FOR OUR MULGOA COMMUNITY

KINGSLEY LIU – The “Peoples Attorney”

Kingsley Liu is a symbol of social justice and community spirit

A third generation Chinese, descended from the 1800’s Bendigo goldfields, Kingsley Liu commenced his working life as an engineer with the State Electricity Commission in Victoria.

Kingsley then worked as an investment banker in HK and London. Returning to Sydney and arming himself with a law degree and a passion for social justice, Kingsley set up a law practice now noted for fighting courtroom battles for the disadvantaged, battlers and community clients.

“The community needs genuine representation in the NSW State Parliament. We have seen the dishonesty major political parties engage in to get candidates elected coming out of ICAC”.

“I’ve worked with the ordinary people of Western Sydney representing their voices in the courtroom and I will continue to do this honestly for the residents and businesses of
Mulgoa.”

Kingsley’s election platform will be:

Protect public services such as education, health and women services
Fight to protect the heritage and environmental values of Mulgoa Valley
Stand against the sell-off of electricity
Force the Government to account and be transparent with its urban development and infrastructure projects in Western Sydney in particular.

“With an understanding of business and economics I can help Western Sydney and this region grow jobs and flourish. With a strong commitment, living and working in the Penrith area I can take the voices of the people to the Parliament of NSW.”

Kingsley can be contacted on Email: kingsleyliu3@hotmail.com Phone: 0414 580 428

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Western Weekender Article Response – Fiona Scott welcomes axing of the carbon tax (25 July 2014 Issue 1163)

Letter to the Editor from Michelle Tormey, sent 30 July 2014

In response to this article:

Carbon Pricing has made a difference.

According to the Climate Institute, since the introduction of the carbon price:
– Pollution is down by 10.3 percent in the year to May 2014.
– Our energy mix is cleaner including increased uptake of Solar & Wind. Carbon pollution per megawatt hour is also down by 5.7 percent since the introduction of the carbon price.
– The Australian economy remains strong, the predicted catastrophic impacts on the economy have not come to pass.
– It was achieving its reduced pollution level target of 15 percent by 2020
– The majority of Australians (almost 2 thirds) want climate action leadership from our government.

Fiona should take a look at the achievements of our council and the civic leadership it has shown in regards to sustainability, by implementing its own mechanisms to move towards a lower carbon future such as the sustainability revolving fund, recycled organics and the installation of solar panels on council assets.

On the note of families being better off, and the retention of the clean energy supplement I would note that with the removal of the income the carbon price generated they will need to find the money elsewhere to compensate eligible families. From a government who claims we are in a budget crisis, it seems hypocritical to make such commitments. Where will the money come from?

Michelle Tormey (Greens Councillor & Sustainability Champion – Penrith City Council)

For your reference:
http://www.penrithcity.nsw.gov.au/Our-Future/Sustainability/Sustainable-Council/Past-Projects/
http://www.climateinstitute.org.au/verve/_resources/Carbon_laws_turn_2_-_updated_.pdf
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-30/tony-abbott-carbon-tax-gas-electricity-bills/5050348

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Women’s Experience Undervalued in Penrith Council?

Media Release issued on 18 September 2014

Greens Councillor, Michelle Tormey, thinks Penrith would benefit from a female mayor. Since 1960, women have sat in the top job for only six of the 54 years, which is about 10% of the time.

In 2015, its time forPenrith Council to put a woman in the Mayors seat. There are at least two very experienced candidates, one of whom has held the position previously.

Councillor Tormey said, “as a young woman learning how local government leads on important community matters, like early childhood, disability and community services it would begood to have a female Mayor who would, given the statistics, act as a powerfulrole model.”

“Not just for myself butfor other young women that I know, young women who are looking to have a voiceand a leadership role in our community.”

Our last female mayor wasCouncillor Jackie Greenow, who held the position for one year – from 2004-2005.

Cr Tormey said, “Next Monday the Council will again nominate a Mayor for the 2014-15 year. AlthoughI will not myself nominate I hope to see a female mayoral nomination. They will get my vote”.

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