WA Labor announces Jessica Shaw as Swan Hills candidate


Opposition Leader Mark McGowan with Swan Hills candidate Jessica Shaw.
Opposition Leader Mark McGowan with Swan Hills candidate Jessica Shaw.

Opposition Leader Mark McGowan introduced candidate Jessica Shaw in Ellenbrook on Friday.

Ms Shaw, of Mt Helena, said living in the Swan Hills helped her understand the local area.

“I’ve been in Mt Helena for the past two years, in Glen Forest before that and Chidlow before then,” Ms Shaw said.

“I’ve always been a hillbilly.”

A boundary shuffle means the West Swan electorate – held by Labor MP Rita Saffioti – loses Ellenbrook to Swan Hills.

Ms Shaw said Ellenbrook would be a major focus of Labor’s election campaign.

“I think when you have a look at the sorts of people living here in Ellenbrook, they’re very much like me,” she said.

“Young people, working hard, trying to get ahead for themselves, encountering all sorts of pressures around job security, around cost of living, and I couldn’t be happier to be here working in the community and advocating for their interests.”

She also promised to fight for Metronet, a train line that would connect Ellenbrook and surrounding northeastern areas with the city.

“Public transport is clearly a priority for Labor,” Ms Shaw said.

“We are very conscious the state faces tough times.

“We will build the project, we will stage it, it’s a long-term plan and one that we will deliver in a responsible manner.”

Mr McGowan said it was terrific to have Ms Shaw preselected as the party’s candidate.

“She’s a dynamic, accomplished local woman,” Mr McGowan said.

“I’m sure she will be a great representative for the area if she’s successful at the election next year.”

He also said Ms Shaw had an extensive resume, which included a Masters Degree in law at Cambridge University.

“Her working life has been quite impressive; she’s worked in a range of businesses and held senior positions,” he said.

Before entering politics, Ms Shaw was a consultant for engineering firm Merz.

She also worked at the Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Horizon Power.

The Swan Hills electorate is currently held by Liberal Frank Alban, who won the seat by a 3.7 per cent margin in the 2013 election.