Labor candidate for the federal seat of Canning kick-started her campaign on Sunday and said she had her sights set on “painting the Peel region red”, figuratively not literally.
Mellisa Teede launched her campaign at a quiet barbecue at the Keith Holmes Reserve.
With the Labor Party holding the Legislative Assembly’s seats of Mandurah with David Templeman and Murray-Wellington with Robyn Clarke, Ms Teede said there was a mood towards the party in the region.
“I’m really confident,” she said.
“Mandurah’s Labor, Pinjarra’s Labor. We’re got a very strong Labor presence here.”
As well as local branch members, Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union secretary Steve McCartney and Labor’s South West MP Sally Talbot were in attendance at the supporters function at the weekend.
Despite the low-key launch party, Ms Teede indicated there was plenty more in store ahead of the next election and warning candidates to be on their toes.
“We’ve just started a bit of soft campaign,” she said.
“We’re very much in the early stages, but we’ll be out there. There will be lots happening and I’m really looking forward to it.
“These are people basically from Mandurah that have come behind me to support in the campaign.
“We’re really excited about the momentum and the people throwing their support behind me. We’ll have a number of people helping me out.”
While Ms Teede doesn’t live in the electorate, she said she plans on defeating incumbent Liberal MP and Mandurah local Andrew Hastie.
“We’re just looking for a place to live here now,” she said.
“Mandurah and the whole of the region is a fantastic place but there are things we need to do, need to be aware of and tackle.”
Ms Teede said she planned on capitalising on her experience working at the Peel Development Commission.
“I was CEO for three years there,” she said.
“When I was here in the development commission I did a lot of work in terms of social and economic development and looking at what’s needed for the future. Really transformational stuff.”
Ms Teede said through working in that role she could gain an insight into issues affected the region.
“It’s a constant battle when you’re 50 kilometres out of the metro area to get equal accesses to services and infrastructure,” she said.
She said boosting the current education system and catching those slipping through the cracks was critical to ensuring a better outcome for constituents.
“I know the unemployment rates have fluctuated and it has dipped at the moment, which is good but we still have traditionally very high youth unemployment rates,” she said.
“Job creation is so important, but it’s also about getting quality education and key infrastructure to back that up.
“I’ve got a long history in education and training, spent 30 years in teaching in schools and in TAFE colleges.”
More recently, Ms Teede had been an adviser to Minister for Child Protection Simone McGurk.