Earl James: Greens candidate for Gateway Ward

By  |  0 Comments

I’m a father and husband who has lived in Port Melbourne since 2011.

I love our diverse community and I’m standing for local government to ensure that it continues to be a great place to raise a family.

I’m an economics teacher and both economic development and education are what drive me.

New developments like Fisherman’s Bend are an exciting opportunity to expand our vibrant community. At their best, such developments provide a once-in-a lifetime opportunity to create world-class models of sustainable housing, catering to the diverse needs of our communities.

We need to make sure that we realise this potential by ensuring there are high-quality early education and health services, local community facilities, and affordable housing options. The alternative is unsustainable and drab private estates that serve the interests of well-connected developers — and no one else.

We also need to make sure that planning decisions are made with people in mind. As a keen cyclist, commuting daily to work on our busy roads, I know first-hand that people are increasingly demanding safe pedestrian and bike space.

Not only is this about doing our bit to combat climate change, it’s also about the future physical health and wellbeing of our children and our community. Being able to ride or walk to school and work shouldn’t just be privilege of the few.

Basically, it comes down to the kind of community we want to live in. My wife Ellis is a local businessperson. I know that small businesses are the lifeblood of any community. We need to ensure that council makes sensible decisions, that create sustainable environments for local traders.

More and more, we need to connect our local community to the wider world. Education is key to making that connection. As a teacher, I know the power of education to transform lives. I want to ensure our kids get off to the best start in life, able to live and thrive in a globalised world.

My daughter attends Dutch classes in our diverse community, and I’ll work to ensure that our children have opportunities to develop their skills as productive global citizens. Nowhere is this more important than in a richly diverse municipality as ours.

I want Council to be more responsive to residents’ concerns and be more transparent in its decision making while addressing the key challenges we face. That’s why, as a Greens candidate, I will not accept donations from developers and will make planning decisions based on what is best for the whole community.

We in the Greens are committed to democracy. And that means being open about candidates’ connections. Voters should know who they are voting for, and have candidates’ links to parties made clear so an informed choice can be made.

I’ll be running along with a great Greens team of Ogy Simic and Ella Webb in Gateway Ward.

Please get in touch, Facebook @EarlJamesGreens or Earl.James@vic.greens.org.au

Find us on FacebookFind us on FacebookFind us on FacebookFind us on Facebook