Meet the Candidates – Bendigo West 2018

Democracy 4 Dinner hosted a ‘Meet the Candidates’ on October 24th in Castlemaine for the electorate of Bendigo West, one month before the Victorian state election.  Lexi Randall-L’Estrange (off camera) introduced the event and Warwick Smith was the MC.

Candidates in attendance:

  • Maree Edwards, Labor Candidate (right side of candidate table)
  • Laurie Whelan, Greens Candidate (middle of table)
  • Marilyn Nuske, Animal Justice Party Candidate (left of table)
  • Absent: Kevin Finn, Liberal Candidate

The questions on the night were:

  1. With property prices at unaffordable levels for many vulnerable people, what are your policies for ensuring there is sufficient affordable, quality housing in the region for young people, families and for our ageing population?
  2. We can’t keep up with the local demand for community health services, especially mental health services. What is your commitment to investment in community and preventative health?
  3. With climate change impacts starting to be felt, what are your plans for assisting the community in moving towards 100% renewables and increasing our ability to sequester carbon through afforestation and sustainable land management practices?
  4. Considering that animal agriculture is a major contributor worldwide and in Australia to greenhouse gas emissions and hence climate change, what is your party’s position on the ever expanding scale of animal agriculture?
  5. What do you see as unique opportunities for economic development for Castlemaine and surrounds, and what policies will take us there?

Other popular questions voted on by the community included use of under utilised or vacant State Government owned land, better public transport, commitment to a new health and wellbeing hub, protecting women from family violence, protection of old growth forest, and broad issues around animal justice.

Questions were put forward and voted on by the community via OurSay in advance of the event. You can see the results of the questions here: https://oursay.org/democracy-for-dinner/what-are-your-questions-for-the-candidates/tab/most-voted#questions

Thank you to the event supporters Mount Alexander Sustainability Group, Localising Leanganook, and Connecting Country. Thank you to Adam from Democracy for Dinner for recording the event.

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