building a powerful movement for change 

By Adam Bandt, Leader of the Australian Greens & MP for Melbourne 


Our goal is to build a powerful movement for change. 

We want to transform this country from one where big corporations make massive profits from wars, the climate crisis and the essentials, like food, housing and power - the things people need - to one where the interests of people are prioritised.      

In the upcoming federal election, and the decade to come, we have a historic opportunity to grow our party’s base of support. There is a class of people who are being left behind by Labor and fed up with the Liberals and are being smashed by the cost of living and housing crisis.

We have traditionally been a party who were seen as the best to tackle the climate crisis and protect the environment, and we have built a powerful bloc in the Senate. Now, in order to grow our movement, we need to keep connecting with people over the concerns they face in their lives. 

We can be the party who everyone trusts will fight for renters. We can be the party of people who fight for everyone locked out of housing and facing homelessness. We can be the party for the people who can’t afford to feed their families or are worried about whether they can afford to see the doctor. 

This is going to take work, and it’s going to take work from all of us. People may not have traditionally thought of us in connection with those issues or know what our policies are. We are going to have to show people that while change might not happen overnight, voting for the Greens means that people will actually have someone to fight for them. 

We do this by reaffirming our founding pillars, who we are and what has made us Greens. It has never been more important to stop coal and gas. We have a Labor government who has all but given up on protecting the environment. We are the only party who will fight to protect the Great Barrier Reef, the forests of Tasmania and the rivers which are the lifeblood of the nation.

But let’s be very clear who is threatening these places, most often, it’s for profit. It’s big corporations who are taking too much water from the Murray Darling. It’s big coal and gas corporations who are profiting from the mining and burning of coal and gas which is destroying the Great Barrier Reef.

We face powerful big corporations which pay millions in donations to the major political parties. They think that when they pay the piper, they can call the tune. The entire economy is designed for their profit, at our expense. 

But what we have is different. We have a bold, positive vision for the future. We do not take money from big corporations who are profiting at our expense. 

Whatever the problems we face, the solution is not the racist, nuclear-fueled rubbish being sprouted by Peter Dutton, nor the insipid, coal and gas powered capitulation of the Labor party. Both the major parties are funded by the big corporations, acting for them, and at our expense. 

We’ve seen this past month the lengths the major parties will go to to shut down the calls for peace, stopping debate and slandering peaceful protestors when we call out the government’s complicity in the ongoing invasion of Gaza.

I have been heartened by words of support from people on the streets of Melbourne and across the country, people thankful for what the Greens are doing in Parliament to continue to put pressure on Labor to end their backing of this genocide. The movement for peace will not be lectured to or stopped by those backing the invasion.

The old parties are feeling the pressure like never before and if you are feeling angry and frustrated at the political establishment, now is the perfect time to take action. This is a huge opportunity, but it’s also a great challenge. People are disconnecting from politics because the government clearly isn’t addressing the problems they face.

Many people are sick of watching the news. There are fewer and fewer people who are members of the Liberal and Labor party. Many people don’t trust the traditional media and increasingly get their information from social media, also run for the profits of large corporations. We face a political establishment who see us as a threat. 

We have the answers, but our challenge is to get in front of people to outline how we can fight for them. To do this, we need to be a part of our community and focus on organising.

Our job is to doorknock, talk to people, do the work and do it properly. We have seen the power of well organised campaigns focused on being part of the community. We have seen it in the last federal election and recent state and territory elections.  

To build this powerful movement, we need to work, we need to hold our ground and we need to be prepared to withstand the attacks from the political establishment we’re taking on. But we’re up for it.