Yerrabi Candidates who will put education first

In Yerrabi, there Veronica Wensing, Suzanne Orr and Michael Petterson are committed to putting public education first. Veronica Wensing from the Greens is the only candidate in Yerrabi to sign our pledge. 



Veronica_Wensing.PNGVeronica Wensing - Greens Candidate 

The ACT Greens believe in high quality education for every member of our community. I believe in a well-funded public, secular education system that meets the needs of the ACT’s students in all their diversity.

I’m a mum, I’ve spent most of my career in the community sector working with women - and often their children - fleeing violence. That’s why I want to see Respectful Relationships programs embedded in schools, because harmful attitudes that denigrate women and girls are a causal factor of such violence. We need to help our kids develop respectful attitudes to each other and to others. I understand that schools are not only a place of education and formal learning, they are places of great influence over the types of people and citizens that our young people will become. That is why I am so committed to investing in the long term ability for our schools, teachers and public schools to support young people as they grow up.

Education is one of the greatest equalisers in our community. It is crucial to overcoming the inequality in our society and breaking down the barriers that many of our young people face. Schools present us with an enormous opportunity to support and nurture young people to build the leaders of the future.

That means fighting for programs like Safe Schools to promote inclusion and support young people grappling with issues of gender and sexuality. It means defending Gonski to make high quality education a reality for all young people – regardless of where they live, their family’s income or the school they attend. And it means investing in our teachers and principals to give the best possible support to our students.


Suzanne_Orr.PNGSuzanne Orr - ACT Labor Candidate 

I grew up in Giralang playing cricket with my neighbours in our cul-de-sac and going to Brownies at the local school hall. While I was growing up my family fostered over 200 children. It taught me early on that even though we can do our best to help each other, sometimes we need a bit more support. Luckily, my family had access to services that could help us support the children we were caring for. It also showed me what an important role governments have in helping out when we most need it. 

From pre-school to year 12 my brothers and I went to local public schools. Every year at the start of first term my dad would give us the same advice, “study hard so you have lots of opportunities in life”. When I was older I realised the reason my dad gave us this advice was because he never had the opportunity to finish year 12 and he wanted more for his kids. I took his advice and finished year 12 as well as a Bachelor’s degree at ANU. Along with my brothers and cousins, I was part of the first generation in my dad’s family to go to university. I now work as an urban planner and recently bought my first home in Franklin.

I am running for the Legislative Assembly because I want to keep working with people to make our community the best it can be with opportunity for everyone.


Michael_Pettersson.PNGMichael Pettersson - ACT Labor Candidate 

I’m Michael Pettersson, one of the Labor candidates for Yerrabi. I grew up in Canberra, and I now work as an advocate for the workplace rights of local construction workers.

I want to keep Canberra on a path that balances growth, prosperity, and a fair go. A crucial part of this is investing in education, and it is only Labor Governments that really focus on investment in education. I have been telling people in Yerrabi that making sure we have great schools in Canberra is one of my top priorities. This is because I have seen the value of a good education first hand.

I went to school at Campbell High School and Dickson College. The education I received at those schools fostered my interest in improving our city and our country. A school can only ever be as good as its teachers, and I was fortunate enough to benefit from the work of some very dedicated educators. My mother Susan was a Workplace Health and Safety teacher at CIT. I know personally that teachers and the work they do is often undervalued, and I am determined to always listen to teachers and their expert knowledge of the education sector.



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