Announcing our candidate for the Mulgrave by-election

Posted on Friday, 29 September

Due to the resignation of Daniel Andrews, a by-election will take place in the south-eastern Melbourne seat of Mulgrave.

Victorian Socialists is proud to announce Kelly Cvetkova as our candidate for this election.

Kelly Cvetkova for Mulgrave

Kelly writes:

“I’m a renter in Mulgrave, a retail worker and a part-time student at Monash University.

Right now in Australia we’re going through a severe cost of living crisis. Wealthy landlords, investors and big banks are making eye watering sums from rapidly rising rents and interest rates, while many of us are struggling just to keep a roof over our heads.

The cost of basic essentials is rising day by day, and wages are languishing far behind inflation. As a renter and a casual worker, I know what it’s like to live on a minimum wage and have to skimp on necessities to get by.

But while there’s a cost of living crisis for the vast majority of us, it’s a different story for those at the top of society. Look at big companies in Australia, like supermarket giants Coles and Woolworths that each reported more than $1 billion in profit in the past year.

The ‘big four’ banks got a combined $16 billion in the last six months of 2022 alone, and multinational fossil fuel companies took home more than $120 billion from exports of coal and gas in 2022—helping to drive the climate crisis while they were at it.

The politicians who let these companies get away with it continue to give themselves pay rises while they hold down public sector wages and preside over an industrial relations system that restricts workers from fighting for a fairer deal themselves.

Victorian Socialists exists to fight for and alongside working-class people and those least well off. We’ll stand up against the bosses and their political backers—whether inside the halls of parliament, in our workplaces, or on the streets. 

We don’t just want to tinker with the system. We think that to stop out-of-control inequality, fight racism, sexism, transphobia and other forms of oppression, address the climate crisis, or solve any of the other major issues facing society today will require radical, transformative change.

Electing socialists to parliament is one part of winning that change. If you vote for me, you can be sure that I will fight for your interests, rather than being yet another political-hack in the pockets of big business.

I’ve been a socialist for many years. I’ve participated in campaigns against the resurgence of the far right and neo-Nazis and for migrant and refugee rights. I’ve fought for more public housing and helped organise community solidarity for strikes at workplaces across Melbourne.

We believe part of the problem with politics today is that parliamentarians are so overpaid that they can’t possibly relate to the concerns of ordinary people. That’s why we think politicians should be paid only an average full-time worker’s wage.

If elected, I will accept only $87,000 of the almost $200,000 starting salary for an MP, and donate the rest back into local community campaigns in Mulgrave.

Get involved today, be part of our campaign to strike a blow against the political status-quo in which the agenda of the rich and powerful dominates, and help us win real change!”