东南网澳大利亚站讯 （本站记者 彭寒）由于选区变化等诸多一系列因素，悉尼南区机场附近的Barton选区几近成为了澳大利亚华人选民最接近影响澳大利亚政治历史的地方。
Election 2016: Labor Candidate for Barton, Linda Burney
By Han, Southeast Net Australia。
Never ever in the history of Australian federal election, Chinese Australian voters have come this close of making history, by which we may not only witness the possible change of federal government, but also, more likely, the first indigenous woman in the House of Representative of Australian Parliament.
After picking up a large part of Hurstville, Barton now has probably one of the largest proportions of Chinese Community among all the electorates across NSW。
Linda Burney, the first Aboriginal person to serve the Parliament of NSW, believe she’s ready to carry these tags on her shoulder and move forward for creating new history.
“One of the things that’s fascinating about this coming election is everyone in Barton understands we can create history.”She told Southeast Net Australia.
I am proud of who I am
“I have been a Labor Party member since mid 80’s, and I’ve never ever considered any other parties。 Because its value and what it stands for reflects who I am。”
Beside the shared value with Labor, she singles out equality, fairness, and representing working people。
Linda, the proud member of the mighty Wiradjuri aboriginal nation, officially began her political career in 2003 when she was elected as the Member for Canterbury.
However, becoming the first Aboriginal people in the NSW Parliament is not considered as the most life-changing moment, according to herself.
Ten years ago, Linda’s husband passed away, where she changed her view of life completely.
“We had a great love and I still think of him every single day. What I learnt from it is that nothing is sure in life.”
In the past ten years, Linda became the most successful Aboriginal woman in the state politics of NSW. 5 years ago, she was elected the deputy leader of Labor Party in NSW.
“The thing that I’d always tell the media is ‘Don’t box me into aboriginal person.’ I’m a woman and an Australian. Being an aboriginal does not mean a narrowed view of the world. ”
Apart from Aboriginal affairs, she has also worked as Minister for Youth and Minister for Community Service.
Big Hello to Chinese Community in Barton
“The relation between China and Australia goes back to many hundreds of years ago, particularly in the Gold Rush when many Chines miners were here looking for Gold。 ”
Even if the story of the Chinese miners back in the Gold Rush and the level of white miners’ aggression against them is what Australia has just began to understand, Linda believes the experience of the Chinese people on this continent is a big part of Australian story.
“A Chinese Miner married an Aboriginal woman, therefore many Aboriginal families from the places where Gold Rush took place actually have Chinese Surnames.”
Throughout the past 13 years’ representing Canterbury in the NSW Parliament, Linda had a chance to work with many Chinese communities and organizations, CASS for example。
“I want to develop close relationship with all the Chinese organizations, communities and also students in Barton as well.”
Additionally, as Southeast Net Australia has covered in a previous story, Linda is committed of introducing compulsory mandarin education in schools of Barton at every opportunity at Canberra if elected.
Labor’s promise of introducing 3-years family visa of continuous stay was responded by the Liberal’s 5-year commitment. Numbers of Chinese Australians also expressed the worries over the commitment ending up being a campaign token.
“What Labor said is a solid rock. Any political party would be foolish not to take Chinese Community seriously.”
“I can say without any fear of contradiction that I understand how important the Chinese community is in Barton.”
In respond to what concerns the Chinese Australian parents over the issue of Safe School Program, particularly about what kids may learn at school about GLBT group, Linda gave us a clear respond。
“Let’s be clear of what the safe school program is. It’s about anti-bullying. The program is voluntary. It’s up to school to decide if they want to have it or not.”
“It is completely wrong to say it’s compulsory and you child is going to be taught to be gay。 I found that reprehensible and the people that are saying really need to take a look at themselves。”