Words | Rayna Bland
As the year 2020 quickly rolled in, so have some changes to the leadership in the Australian Greens Party. Richard Di Natale has stepped down as the Greens leader after serving in the role for ten years. Adam Bandt, a former industrial lawyer has risen to his place uncontested on the 4th of February. The party’s co-deputy leaders are Larissa Water and Nick McKim.
Before entering parliament, Bandt worked as a public interest and industrial relations lawyer. Bandt says he represented firefighters and coal workers when they faced the threat of privatisation. During Parliament, he served as co-deputy leader of the Greens from 2012 to 2015 and 2017 to 2020. Prior to this, Bandt won his seat in the 2010 federal election, becoming the first member of the Greens elected to the House of Representatives.
Bandt has come in hot and strong with a ‘Green New Deal’. This campaign aims to address Australia’s climate injustice and alleviate poverty. Adam Bandt also wants to ensure that everyone’s voices feel heard. In this respect, Bandt is engaging with rural and mining communities to ensure they get a just transition into a greener economy.
“We are a smart and wealthy country and if we have the guts to take on big corporations and the weak politicians they have in their pockets, we can solve these crises. That is why we need a Green New Deal,” he posted on Twitter, shortly after winning the leadership.
Bandt also said the Deal would see dental care being included in Medicare and “genuinely free” education.
The Greens hold a climate, environment and social focused vision. It will be very interesting to see how this spans out over 2020.