What makes some people care passionately and others expend their lives in a daily round of consumption, leisure and work? One key influence was the sudden realisation as a teenager that, ‘There but for the grace of God, go I’. I could have been born anywhere as anyone.
The realisation of privilege, Protestant guilt laced with specifically Methodist duty made me a hopeless workaholic. Since 2013 I have engaged in field campaigning, most particularly leading doorknocking and phone-banking teams. In 2015 I established and convened Curtin’s CASE, a group responsible for delivering to Julie Bishop, Australia’s lead negotiator at UN climate talks, over 7000 communications from her electorate and beyond – petitions, letters, emoji postcards; a climate change survey; public actions outside Julie Bishop’s office; school visits; speaking engagements with local clubs.
I am active member of the Perth Organising Committee for the People’s Climate March 2015, including co-convenor of the doorknocking exercise in Julie Bishop’s electorate. If I could change one thing in Australian politics, I would extend people’s active engagement in the democratic process to create a real participatory democracy.