O’Malley targets critical state seat


WA Labor Leader Mark McGowan and Melville councillor Lisa O’Malley, who will contest the seat of Bicton.
WA Labor Leader Mark McGowan and Melville councillor Lisa O’Malley, who will contest the seat of Bicton.

Based on the result of the last election, the Liberal Party holds a 10 per cent margin in the newly created seat of Bicton.

But both WA Labor and Mrs O’Malley, a passionate schools campaigner and vocal opponent of Roe 8, believe the seat is ripe for the picking.

“Much has changed since the last State election and the shift in electoral boundaries to include the suburbs of East Fremantle and Palmyra, which will be directly affected by the Perth Freight Link should the project proceed, will have an impact on the political landscape,” Mrs O’Malley said.

“Additionally, the people of the electorate of Bicton will be asking serious questions about the financial management capabilities of the Barnett Government who after nearly eight years, have taken our State’s debt to $39 billion. There will also be many in our community who have felt the impact of cuts to health, education, disability services and the aged.”

Mrs O’Malley said her journey into politics began when her eldest child began school.

After joining the Parents and Citizens Association, Mrs O’Malley became progressively more involved in school advocacy and is now the State councillor for Fremantle Central with the Western Australian Council of State School Organisations. She is also a founding member of parent action group Save Our Schools, which formed in response to education funding cuts beginning in 2013.

On a local level, Mrs O’Malley said the biggest electorate issues revolved around transport and community.

“There are many concerns around congestion and the need for an integrated public transport network and a long term solution to freight movement that does not divide our electorate and destroy homes and businesses,” she said.

“Other issues that I have come across so far include concerns over community safety and the rise in crime across the electorate. Resourcing and classroom support of our local schools also remains an issue with families.”

Mrs O’Malley is likely to contest Bicton against either Alfred Cove MLA Dean Nalder or Bateman MLA Matt Taylor, who are locked in a pre-selection battle for Bateman.

The State election will be held on March 11 next year.