Meet the 2022 Candidates for Casey

We have been emailing all the Casey 2022 Federal Election candidates asking if they would write a short piece introducing themselves to Mt Evelyn residents, and what they stand for.
As in previous election information pages, all candidate information is listed in order of where they appear on the ballot form.

Jenny Game – Greens
I’m sure we share many of the same concerns and passions, and I want you to know the Greens and I will work with you, to first— understand what’s needed and second — put energy and resources into making a real difference in the community.

Let me tell you a bit about myself. I am a musician, a composer and an educator with a Doctorate in the Creative arts and a job in higher education management. I play saxophone and I write music for my own band, which has the odd gig around town.

I was immediately drawn to the stunning natural environment of the Dandenong Ranges while studying music at the Victorian College of the Arts in 1989. I later bought a home in Upwey, where I now live with my two teenage boys. We love this place and I’m sure you would agree, its landscape and wildlife are very special. Our area has 130 native bird species including the Lyrebird we’re famous for, and 61 native animals. Sadly, we also have 52 species of threatened birds and 38 species of threatened animals. As the Greens Candidate for Casey, I’ll be taking actions to protect them.

Also, the fact that the Dandenong Ranges attracts and nurtures so many creative artists and performers is something of personal importance to me. Especially now, with COVID-19 hitting so many businesses, we need this area as a home for collaborative initiatives and organisations aimed at supporting these people and promoting their work. Our beautiful environment, forests and wildlife attract tourists, and so does our vibrant arts and cultural life. That’s something I’ll make sure continues.

I was born in Melbourne, but my family moved to Canberra when I was very young, and I grew up in a staunchly Liberal party environment during the Whitlam/Fraser eras. Politics was always a hot topic and my first introduction to it was getting laughed at for wanting to play footy with the boys. The clear message was “girls don’t matter”. I was often angry and frustrated by the many ways I could see that social justice and care for the environment was missing.

Then in 1979, a new Aboriginal tent embassy was set up at the end of the street where I was at high school. I was totally inspired by this long-running campaign to protest about the terrible living conditions indigenous people had to suffer in their own country. It left me with a new message: be bold, be visible and don’t go away!!

That’s why in 1988, I marched in support of the protest indigenous people held against the Australian Bicentenary. A change was coming, but it was too slow. Since the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody, 474 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have died in custody, including five since the start of March this year.

When I was growing up, uranium mining was all the rage in Australia. Even the Labor government supported it by opening and proposing new mines against the wishes of the indigenous people. But no one had answers for what the consequences of storing waste or accidents might be, and then Chernobyl happened—a nuclear explosion that killed thousands—and the Fukushima nuclear disaster of 2011, which was directly fuelled by Australian uranium, sparked calls from the UN for all uranium producing countries to hold a cost benefit analysis into uranium mining. Yet mines in Australia continue.

While the generation before me enjoyed job security and a free education, I accrued a heavy HECs debt, watched the demise of the unions, and the explosion of the gig economy.

In November 1992, soon after I moved back to Melbourne to study music, I marched with 150,000 people representing every walk of life, from metal workers to nurses and teachers, who clogged the CBD to protest the restrictive new employment contracts brought in by the then Liberal premier Jeff Kennett. Under Kennett, we also saw the closure of hundreds of public schools and significant privatisation. That day, tens of thousands also took to the streets across regional Victoria. Statewide, there were 800,000 people on strike. It was incredible and no one was expecting it. But the protests fizzled and nothing changed.

In the days when I was passionate about all of this and motivated to participate, I couldn’t see where I fitted in, or a future for me in politics.

Enter the Greens!! I’ve been a Greens voter since the party’s inception in 1992. And now, I represent the Greens as the Federal Candidate for Casey. Why? Because the Greens have a policy affirming Treaty and truth-telling, the foundational processes required to make sure any changes in the constitution are meaningful and not just tokenistic. A ‘Treaty first’ approach is essential to ensure that Indigenous sovereignty is recognised. It is the first step towards equality and freedom from the sort of harassment, fear, violence, abuse and discrimination that our first peoples still suffer today.

I represent the Greens because they believe universal access to high quality education is fundamental to the development of a fair, economically and socially just and environmentally sustainable Australia and that governments are responsible for providing this.

They’re creating an industrial relations system that protects and enhances the rights of employees and workers by maintaining a legislated minimum standard for pay, penalty rates, annual leave and hours of work that protect all employees and workers, as well as expanding the national employment standards to include foster carer leave, surrogacy leave and domestic violence leave.

And perhaps most importantly, I am running for Casey in the next federal election because of climate change. You know it, I know it, the world knows it — There is a climate emergency. The Greens are the only party in Australia not ambivalent on this point. Australia can and must become a renewable energy superpower.

I mentioned before that the Dandenong Ranges has 52 species of threatened birds and 38 species of threatened animals. As you probably know, that’s not just happening here. Millions of species worldwide are going extinct.

And it’s not just happening to animals. People are dying, in danger and suffering. Every tonne of coal, oil and gas burnt increases the intensity and speed of changes to our climate, which means more floods, more droughts, more heatwaves and more bushfires. It means Cyclones getting more intense and moving south.

Coal and gas are damaging our health, our water, our ability to grow food, the air we breathe. If we don’t phase them out, we’ll see more loss and destruction.

The Greens have a comprehensive strategy to rapidly transform Australia’s energy system from one of the oldest and dirtiest in the world, to one of the cleanest and smartest.

Renewables are already driving down power prices. Australia is at the forefront of technological innovation. We have everything we need to repower our economy with renewables.

Our evidence-based plan will mean a managed transition to a renewable energy economy — one that will replace coal with renewables, build a new clean-energy export industry and create 180,000 new jobs.

I request that you support my candidature and regardless of the outcome, donate to the Greens campaign, put your name down to volunteer in any way you’d like — letterboxing, handing out how to vote cards — anything you can think of — and lets turn this country Green.

Girls like me didn’t go away — now we have a Victorian Woman’s football team!!

We must maintain the pressure—be bold, be visible and don’t go away because the environment, human rights, Indigenous issues, education and the arts DO all matter.

Craig Cole – Independent
*Craig has only given us a link to his website for all his information

Andrew Klop – Animal Justice Party
1. Animal Justice Party issues apply to all Casey voters
Our focus is on the welfare of animals, people and the planet.

The biggest issues for our local area also apply to the nation as a whole. We are currently facing a climate emergency which poses an existential threat to our survival. Animal Justice Party will directly address the harm which continues to be done to our country’s flora and fauna. Our policies will immediately reduce the devastating loss of native habitat, most urgently where some species have become endangered (the most recognised threat currently to koalas and kangaroos in Victoria and New South Wales).

We know that, according to research conducted by Animals Australia, about 75% of Australians oppose the awful cruelty of live animal export, and we will act immediately to end this trade and introduce onshore processing for Australian animals, to allow for proper and consistent enforcement of anti-cruelty regulations.

We also acknowledge the need for more research into sustainable farming and food production to reduce animal abuse, and also to remove the ongoing threat of further pandemics caused by the spread of zoonotic diseases from intensive farming sites.

Casey is such a diverse seat, with large urbanised pockets and also a huge rural component. There are many different problems affecting the many different sub-groups … the after effects of the pandemic will continue to impact on retail and hospitality businesses, especially in the rural and tourist centres. As a small business owner, I know too well the challenges which have made the last two years so difficult for businesses all across the country and across all industries.

Animal Justice Party will work to ensure that all individuals and businesses still affected by the COVID aftermath will be supported in getting back on their feet.

2. What the Animal Justice Party has achieved in government so far.
The 2019 state election gave us our first Victorian member of Parliament, Andy Meddick MP (our third nationally) and his success has been far-reaching. Animals protection laws, for domestic and native animals, have been successfully embraced by the community. Our support of laws which improve equality and fairness for all, people and all species will continue. We will continue to work to implement policies and programs which benefit animal, humans and the planet.

3. What the people of Casey want from their representative.
I believe all voters want to feel listened to, respected and consulted. They deserve and expect transparency in decision making and this means their elected officials must consult regularly with all stakeholders and all groups. Animal Justice Party’s core values include ‘equality’ for animals and people, and we are committed to policies which promote social and economic equality for people in Casey and in the wider Australian community.

We also know that transparency is vital in a democracy and we will always support open enquiries and wide consultation for all policies and actions which affect any or all of our community groups. And accountability is also hugely important. Every elected official should be available to speak with their constituents, to explain their actions and to demonstrate that they are accountable to the wider community. I want to be a local representative who can reply promptly to questions from local people, with proper information and proper answers.

Every local member must be in regular, grass-roots contact with all the various groups and communities in their electorate. This means being available, in person, for discussions. It means responding to complaints, problems (and also to good news) promptly and with a genuine commitment to helping. I believe that the job of a local member, in all levels of government, is to help people get the support, the help, the information that they need to thrive in their local community. Elected officials must consult and must listen to their electors and they must speak up for them in government, honestly and earnestly. How can a politician represent their community unless they stay in close, regular communication? That’s why local offices are important and why we must encourage people to visit them and speak to their local members.

I’ve lived and worked in the south eastern part of Melbourne for many years. I’ve worked in several industries, most recently running my own business. I’ve got a very good idea of what the electorate wants and needs.

Thank you for the opportunity to explain my values and objectives as a candidate for the Animal Justice Party.

Andrew Klop
2022 Animal Justice Party candidate
Seat of Casey

Aaron Violi – Liberal Party
Aaron Violi is the endorsed Liberal Party candidate for the federal seat of Casey.

A proud third generation resident of Casey, Aaron’s family migrated from Italy and settled in Silvan in 1953.

Both Aaron and his wife Rachel grew up in Casey, where they are raising their two children.

Aaron attended Yarra Glen Primary School and Mt Lilydale Mercy College with his first job working at a local catering company, Prestige Events.

He first attained a Bachelor of Arts (with Honours) at La Trobe University, then a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) at Deakin University.

After graduating in 2007, Aaron commenced work at local food manufacturer, Yarra Valley Snack Foods and led the sales team for 7 years before moving to Mars Australia. In 2019, Aaron transitioned from the FMCG industry into the digital economy taking up a role at a tech startup, Ritual.

Aaron has been deeply engaged with the communities of Casey playing and serving on the committees of many local cricket, soccer and football clubs. He is currently the Vice Chairman of the Lilydale Township Action Group and on the committee for Lilydale Montrose United Soccer Club.

With these deep roots in the Casey community, Aaron is honoured to be your Liberal candidate at the upcoming federal election.

Bill Brindle – Australian Labor Party
We have contacted Bill and will post his response once we receive it.

Paul Murphy – Pauline Hanson’s One Nation
We have contacted Paul and will post his response once we receive it.

Chris Field – Australian Federation Party

We have contacted the Australian Federation Party and will post Chris’s response once we receive it.

Trevor Smith – Liberal Democrats
We have contacted the Liberal Democrats and will post Trevor’s response once we receive it.

Peter Sullivan – Derryn Hinch’s Justice Party

We have contacted Derryn Hinch’s Justice Party and will post Peter’s response once we receive it.

Anthony Bellve – United Australia Party
At eighteen, I joined the Army. Many adventures later and a career that saw me go from Private to Commissioned Officer in the RAAF, to working for the Federal Police, I have a lifetime of diverse experiences to draw upon.

I believe we have a duty to leave our family in a better position than what we inherited. When I applied this belief to Australia, I was genuinely concerned with the country and future my daughter and all our children will inherit. I want change and felt the only way to achieve it was to stand up and try to be the change.

For more information on what I stand for and how I will serve the people of Casey, please visit my website

Claire Ferres Miles – Independent
We have contacted Claire and will post her response once we receive it.