The Journey so far - 2017 WA State Election
In the lead up to the 2017 state election, Colin Barnett and Liza Harvey announced they would sell Western Power if they were returned to office.
The Liberals had put up electricity prices by more than 100 per cent, as they prepared Western Power for sale. If they had won the election and privatised Western Power, prices would have gone up even further, as the new private owners sought to maximise profits.
That had been the experience in states like South Australia, where their electricity system was completely privatised. It would have been the same in WA.
During the 2017 election campaign, the people of WA came together and stopped privatisation in its tracks. The Liberals were defeated and Labor junked the Barnett-Harvey privatisation plan.
Through the hard work of our volunteers, we saw our small grassroots campaign grow into an unprecedented movement in WA, with more and more people joining our cause as the election drew near.
We saw people voice their concerns and unite their communities in town hall meetings across the state.
We saw people from all backgrounds take to the streets of their local suburbs to tell their neighbours why this was such an important issue.
We saw thousands of supporters rally at Parliament to send a message to our politicians and make privatisation the number one election issue.
And when the election rolled around, we saw the people of Western Australia use their power at the ballot box to kick out Colin Barnett, Liza Harvey and the Liberals. That election saved our state’s electricity network from privatisation.
But now, it seems we have to make our case once again.
Since their election defeat, Liza Harvey has gone on radio and spoken in favour of privatising Western Power.
In her first radio interview after becoming leader, she said Liberal policy on privatisation would be decided closer to the next election.
After we ramped up our campaign, she emphatically denied any plans to private Western Power. But, why should we believe her?
Like Colin Barnett, Liza Harvey was 100 per cent opposed to privatisation before the last election, until she was 100 per cent in favour of it.
You can’t trust the Liberals on privatisation.
In the lead-up to the 2021 state election, we’ll campaign until the leader of every major party publicly promises not to privatise our electricity system, and every major party candidate at the election signs a pledge promising not to support privatisation.
Let’s use our power to keep Western Power in public hands.