The Northern Beaches independent movement has its first candidate for the NSW election with Joeline Hackman declaring she will stand against current Liberal MP James Griffin for the state seat of Manly.
The campaign was officially launched this evening, 23 November at Hotel Steyne.
Ms Hackman, who lives in Manly with her doctor husband and two sons, has a background in corporate and charitable organisations and will stand with the weight of momentum behind her from the independent movement that is mobilising to steal once safe state seats on the back of the success of their federal counterparts.
However, Ms Hackman was quick to clarify that her campaign is not just about the teal movement that has spilled into state politics. She is, however, backed by Simon Holmes à Court’s fundraising group Climate 200.
“I will be standing for issues like action on climate change and accountability in Government – but it will be for the people of Manly as their local independent, for the community,” Ms Hackman said.
Ms Hackman was involved in supporting campaign efforts for the Mayor Michael Regan-led Your Northern Beaches Independent Group in the recent Council elections, and has been actively advocating for better conditions for nurses since the COVID pandemic hit.
Manly Observer Editor Kim Smee has partnered with Ms Hackman in her charitable role forming Feed Our Medics, which aimed to keep our frontlines well-nourished during the pandemic while supporting local food businesses.
But it is sustainable living and the climate crisis, for which Ms Hackman may be better known in the community, as founder of the popular Northern Beaches War on Waste Facebook group.
“I feel fortunate to have the opportunity to represent this community where I grew up, and now raise my own family.
“I’ll listen and advocate for the people of the Manly electorate. As a community Independent, I won’t have to vote along party lines and I will align myself to issues that are important to my constituency.”
Standing for the climate change and accountability in government issues is common amongst the independents, yet Ms Hackman highlights education as one of her other key areas of focus.
“With two young energetic boys we are a part of the Surf Life Saving, Soccer and medical communities in the Northern Beaches area. Our children’s friends extend across a number of the local schools including Manly Village, Manly West, North Curl Curl and Balgowlah Heights Public Schools, as well as Pittwater House. This exposure to other primary schools has helped me build a strong network of support and also shown me some of the issues facing our education system.”
Spokesman for the Manly Independent group, Scott Porter, said that after an extensive community search and selection process, Joeline had accepted the challenge to step up and run as the community Independent candidate.
“Joeline has a proven and extensive community driven background which includes co-founding Feed Our Medics and Northern Beaches War on Waste,” he said.
“Joeline has a Masters Degree in Professional Communication from Deakin University and an extensive management and marketing background working with large corporates, small organisations and charities. She brings a wealth of business and community experience to the role.”
In subsequent weeks Manly Observer will sit down with Ms Hackman to ask specific questions relating to her position on key state issues affecting the electorate, including the Northern Beaches Tunnel, housing targets, and hospital resources.
Manly Observer spoke to sitting Member James Griffin to respond to the new candidate selection. Mr Griffin didn’t comment directly on the selection of Ms Hackman, instead pointing to his record of delivery for the local area during his time as MP.
“I have always worked hard to represent our community and deliver results both as the Member for Manly and NSW Environment and Heritage Minister. Over the past few years more than $118 million has been invested by the NSW Government into our local public schools, the $19.5 million hospice for young adults will soon open on the old Manly Hospital site, and a huge investment in health and mental health services are rolling out as we speak.
Not only that, but I committed to and have now delivered on an expansion to women’s refuge services on the Northern Beaches.”
Other parties are yet to announce their candidates for the state seat of Manly.
According to a Climate 200-backed poll last month, the primary vote for a ‘climate ambitious’ candidate with values aligned to the Federal MP Zali Steggall, stands at 39 per cent in Manly, with the current Liberal MP Environment Minister James Griffin polling at 31 per cent primary vote, with a 4.5% margin of error.
The State Election will be held on 25 March 2023.
It will be a race to watch.