Thursday, March 24, 2011

Paola live on ABC!

Thursday March 24, 2011

Listen to Paola live on local ABC radio for the debate between candidates standing in the Keira electorate. She joins the Greens' George Takacs, Labor's Ryan Park and the Liberals' John Dorahy.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Paola in the media

Check out today's Illawarra Mercury for their special election guide. Here's the image of Paola's column with her 'pitch' to voters.
Also she appeared on local Illawarra ABC yesterday as part of a live debate with other Keira candidates including the Greens' George Takacs, Labor's Ryan Park the Liberals' John Dorahy.
George and Paola stood out as clear, rational and pro-people alternatives to the major parties.
Last week Paola featured on local Vox FM with presenter Trevor Mott. She was able to explain what the Socialist Alliance stands for and what she hopes to achieve in this election campaign.

With just two days left to the election, here's five reasons to vote for Paola and the Socialist Alliance:

1. Reverse the privatisations and support public ownership and control of services;

2. Rescue our environment with a transition to 100% renewable energy and green jobs, and protect natural biodiversity;

3. Increase investment in improving and rapidly expanding public housing, health, education and transport;

4. Include and support women, Aboriginal people, Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans and Intersex (LGBTI) people, people with disabilities, refugees, the Muslim community and all those who are scapegoated or ignored;

5. Empower genuine grassroots, democratic control of our lives in our communities and workplaces.

Government's responsibility to protect steel jobs and cut emissions


Wednesday March 23, 2011 - Local candidates for the Socialist Alliance have condemned the attitude of the two major parties towards action on climate change. They have also renewed calls for BlueScope Steel to build the cogeneration plant. Tony Abbott's visit to the steelworks and Ross Garnaut's comments that BlueScope should receive "assistance" for "90 per cent of their obligation" to reduce pollution have put the issue back in the spotlight.

Paola Harvey, Socialist Alliance candidate for the seat of Keira, said: "Tony Abbott doesn't even acknowledge the scientific consensus on climate change, he claims that carbon dioxide isn't a villain. How can we trust his comments on local industry when he displays no understanding of climate science?

"The truth is, the framework for a price on carbon, giving way to an emissions trading scheme, is a step in the wrong direction. Ross Garnaut's comments that BlueScope should only have to pay for 10% of its pollution shows how ineffective this sheme could end up being. If the big polluters can easily absorb the cost without changing their practices, then what's the point?

"BlueScope have known about the need to seriously reduce emissions for many years. They recently reneged on their greenhouse gas reduction deal with the state government by putting off building the cogeneration plant. The plant would reduce carbon emissions by 900,000 tonnes a year, but the steelworks have used excuse after excuse for the delays in construction.

"There is already too much carbon in the atmosphere; we need to reduce emissions across the board including in the steel industry. The state government should require the steelworks to start construction on the cogen plant now. If BlueScope can't afford to take this action they should be required to open their books to workers and the community. If they refuse they should be placed under public ownership, not given more handouts. Why should BlueScope's profits be placed ahead of a safe climate future?

Wollongong-based Legislative Council candidate for the Socialist Alliance, Patrick Harrison, argued: "The standard corporate response to any loss in profitability is to pass the cost onto workers. We've seen this with the steelworks during the recession of the 1980s, and if our state government does nothing, we could see it again in response to this carbon tax. But a publicly owned steel industry would mean the government could guarantee jobs and take action to make the industry cleaner.

"We need state and federal governments to be taking bold action in the face of the greatest threat our species has ever faced. Instead, Abbott is using Labor's carbon tax as another excuse to whip up fear and xenophobia, claiming that China and Indonesia will take our jobs.

"Mr Abbott's comments assume that this is an inevitable move - but the truth is, governments have a responsibility to protect jobs and the economy in a regional area like the Illawarra. Corporate hand-outs aren't going to stop companies moving offshore to cut costs - we saw that with Pacific Brands, which received millions of dollars of government assistance before moving offshore. Instead, we need a government that's willing to stand up to big business and stop them from moving our industry offshore.

"Neither the Coalition nor Labor is willing to do this. If the people of the Illawarra wish to protect their local industry and jobs, then they should vote 1 Socialist Alliance on March 26', Harrison concluded.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Paola's political understanding: 'amazing'

Check out this letter to the editor in the March 15 edition of the Illawarra Mercury. It describes Paola's understanding of the present political situation as 'amazing'!
Our candidates and campaigns receive very little media coverage compared to that of the major parties. But we are getting more and more feedback like this showing that people are looking for an alternative and listening to our ideas.
Paola will be appearing on VoxFM today from 12pm, and will also take part in a live, on-air debate with fellow candidates for Keira, George Takacs, Ryan Park and John Dorahy. The debate will take place next Wednesday March 23, 10.30am sharp. Tune in on 97.3 FM.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Queer candidates stand for marriage equality


Monday March 14, 2011 - Queer candidates Paola Harvey and Rachel Evans are standing for the Socialist Alliance in the NSW state election. Harvey is standing in the seat of Keira, while Evans is standing for the legislative council.

“The federal government is dragging it's heels on marriage equality,” said Harvey, one of the founding members of Equal Love Wollongong, a community based group that campaigns for marriage equality.

“The marriage ban must be lifted, there should be no laws that discriminate against a section of society.”

“But until we win the repeal of the marriage ban federally, states can take action. NSW should take a stand for equality and legislate to become Australia's first equal marriage state.

“This year's Mardi Gras showed clearly that the queer community wants marriage equality, and that the community supports us. It was the most political Mardi Gras in years with 15 floats calling for marriage equality, and about 300,000 people attending in support.

“For too long the relationships of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex (LGBTI) people have been classed as different and lesser under the law. Our relationships are equal and the law must reflect that,” she said.

Evans has been campaigning for marriage equality for the past six years and is one of the key organisers of Community Action Against Homophobia (CAAH) and one of the organisers of CAAH's marriage equality float at Mardi Gras. She has also campaigned for a public inquiry into the death of Veronica Baxter, an Aboriginal trans woman who died in an all male jail.

Evans said: “The marriage ban reinforces homophobia and transphobia in society. Just under one in three queer people will attempt suicide. Queer youth get bullied in schools, and trans people face horrific rates of violent attacks.”

“Legislating for marriage equality is a step towards ending homophobia and transphobia, it's a step towards making our society a safe and accepting place for all queers. But by itself it's not enough, we need build a movement that publically campaigns against all discrimination and against homophobic and transphobic attitudes in society.”

The Socialist Alliance campaigns for an end to homophobia and transphobia. It campaigns for full marriage equality, and equal rights for all LGBTI people in society.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Paola speaks to IWD rally

Watch Paola's speech to the Wollongong rally for International Women's Day, held on Saturday March 12, 2011. The main demand of the action was for pay equity - supporting the campaign of the Australian Services Union (ASU) for equal pay for equal work.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Keira ballot draw

Check out the line up in Keira. This image is from today's Illawarra Mercury and it shows the order of the ballot draw.
Socialist Alliance has decided to preference the Greens' George Takacs first in Keira; and to put Labor's Ryan Park ahead of Liberal John Dorahy. Labor deserves to get the boot, but the Liberals will be worse! We'll be urging voters to put the conservative Christian Democratic Party (CDP) last on the ballot.
In the seat of Wollongong we are calling for a vote for Independent Gordon Bradbery first and the Greens' Brendan Cook second. In Shellharbour and Heathcote we're backing the Greens candidates Peter Moran and Phil Smith.
Scroll down this blog for Paola's media release on preferences.

Paola preferences Greens; then Labor before Liberal

Friday March 11, 2011 - The Socialist Alliance has decided to allocate preferences in the seat of Keira, where it's standing student and part-time worker, Paola Harvey. Preferences will first flow to the Greens' George Takacs and then Labor's Ryan Park. Socialist Alliance has also decided to back Independent Gordon Bradbery in the seat of Wollongong; the Greens' Peter Moran in Shellharbour; and the Greens' Phil Smith in Heathcote.

Socialist Alliance candidate for Keira, Paola Harvey, said: 'When allocating preferences we go from the most progressive candidates to the least progressive. We don't do deals with other candidates or parties, but prefer to decide on a principled basis', she said.

'In Keira we'll preference the Greens first. They have progressive policies that are far better than the major parties. George Takacs is a very good candidate and has been involved in many campaigns for social justice and the environment. We are hoping to see an increased vote for the Greens and are backing them in Shellharbour and Heathcote. In Wollongong we hope people will vote for Gordon Bradbery first and then the Greens' Brendan Cook. Gordon's campaign is a serious challenge to Labor from the left, and something everyone should get behind.

'Given how fed up people are with NSW Labor, the pressure to not preference them is enormous. They do deserve to get the boot but we honestly think a Liberal-National Government would be worse. There are clear signs now that this will be the case including Jeff Kennett's advice to Barry O'Farrell to 'go fast early on'. If we have an opinion on who would be better or worse in government for working people, then it's our obligation to indicate this in preferences. So we'll be preferencing Labor's Ryan Park before Liberal John Dorahy.

'Regardless of who's elected to government on March 26, we promise to continue campaigning for social justice, democratic rights and sustainability. Throughout history, unions and community campaigns have forced politicians to legislate for better social conditions and environmental protection. We'll have to keep this up under a Labor or Liberal government. We are urging people to vote socialist and green because we do need more progressives in the next parliament - progressives who will put their efforts into strengthening the unions and community-based organisations', Harvey concluded.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

TAFE students for Socialist Alliance!

Yesterday's Illawarra Mercury polled TAFE students asking them who they plan to vote for in the coming election.
Socialist Alliance activist - and TAFE student - Tim Dobson was happy to oblige!
He cited privatisation reversal and action on climate as the main reasons he'll be voting socialist. You can't quite see it clearly in the photo, but he's holding 'Power Crisis', a book that explains how the ALP's privatisation push has destroyed the party!
The worrying thing is, three of the other students polled indicated they plan to vote Liberal - the party most likely to increase TAFE fees and casualisation.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Paola speaks to free Libya rally!

Watch Paola's speech to the March 5 Wollongong rally in support of the people of Libya struggling for freedom. Other speakers included Libyan students; Dr Munir Hussain, Chairman Omar Mosque; and Gordon Bradbery, independent candidate for Wollongong.

Liberals absent from community meetings

Here's an article from the weekend edition of the Illawarra Mercury, highlighting the fact that Liberal candidate for Keira, John Dorahy, has been absent from many (if not all?) candidate meetings organised by local residents.
Paola is pictured in the article (in white singlet) with Greens candidate George Takacs and ALP candidate Ryan Park. A member of Illawarra Residents for Responsible Mining (IRRM) is pistured holding a John Dorahy mask!
To read Paola's speech to the meeting organised by IRRM visit

Mercury predicts 2% vote for Paola in Keira

The weekend edition of the Illawarra Mercury predicted some interesting outcomes of the NSW election, set for March 26.
In the seat of Wollongong it predicted a Noreen Hay (ALP) victory by a narrow margin - Hay 53% and Independent Gordon Bradbery 47% after preferences.
In Keira it predicted Paola Harvey would gain 2% of the vote. While still modest this would be an increase on Socialist Alliance's vote in the 2007 NSW election.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

No new coal in Russell Vale!

Last night Paola spoke to a 'meet the candidates' forum organised by Illawarra Residents for Responsible Mining (IRRM), in Russell Vale.

Gujurat NRE, owner of No. 1 Colliery in Russell Vale, wants to expand the colliery's current output by 7.5 times — from 400,000 tonnes a year to 3 million tonnes. Under the plan, 176,500 truck movements will take place each year through suburban areas, IRRM says. Local residents raised concerns about a rise in noise and air pollution from mine operations and trucking.

Paola strongly backed all of the IRRM's demands and promised Socialist Alliance support for the campaign in the future. For Paola's full speech to the meeting visit:
For more information on IRRM's campaign check out this article:

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Paola addresses local neighbourhood forum

On Wednesday March 2, Paola spoke to the local Neighbourhood Five forum (NF5) who, among other things, have fought to keep Glennifer Brae (pictured) in public hands.
The neighbourhood forums are vital to community participation and democracy in Wollongong, especially since the council was sacked in early 2008.
Paola lent her support the NF5's many campaigns, in particular to extend the free shuttle bus service, for fresh elections to Wollongong City Council, to defend the Illawarra escarpment and for better public transport. For Paola's brief speech visit:

Paola speaks to Illawarra community care forum

Check out one of Paola's contributions during discussion at the March 2 forum organised by Illawarra Community Care. Paola, who works as a carer herself, called for a boost in funding to the industry and for an end to competitive tendering. For her full speech visit:

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Paola calls for free public transport in Mercury

Check out this little article from yesterday's Illawarra Mercury, covering the launch of Paola's campaign at the free shuttle bus stop at the Uni of Wollongong.
According to Paola: 'Public transport in NSW has been seriously neglected, but the free shuttle in Wollongong shows the benefits of an efficient, frequent and free service. Nearly five million passengers have now used the shuttle, an astounding success. Why not learn the lesson and dramatically expand the idea to encourage more people to leave the car at home'?
Scroll down this blog for the full media statement.

The launch was also covered by local ABC, Prime TV and i98 radio.