The Victorian Labor party has announced the launch of the Alliance of South Asian Labor Inc (ASALI) to support greater participation in politics by Melbourne’s South Asian community.
The announcement was made by Labor Party’s Praveen Kumar at a Multicultural Small Business Fundraiser with Natalie Hutchins, State Member for Sydenham and Minister for Education in the Victorian Government.
“It is an initiative that seeks to encourage greater participation by people of South Asian origin in politics. It is our experience that South Asians have a keen interest in politics but are too shy to participate directly. With ASALI, Labor Party seeks to build bridges with the community and support greater engagement in politics.”, Praveen Kumar told NRI Affairs.
Ms Hutchins, wearing a purple saree, said that she takes pride in Victoria’s multiculturalism and was proud of her achievements for the Sydenham local area over the last 12 years and added that she would like to continue that work following the state elections in November. She said she proud of representing a multicultural community, and therefore was concerned about the votes going to One Nation and the United Australia Party. She reiterated that it was her government that stands up for multi-culturalism, for small businesses and for workers to ensure that everyone was on an equal footing.
Labor leader Bill Shorten, Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme, who launched Natalie Hutchins’ November state election campaign at thew event, said it was his dream to make Australia the best country in the world for people with disability. “We judge a nation not by how many billionaires we have, or how many submarines we build or how many Olympic medals we win. We judge a nation by how it treats its most vulnerable.”, Mr Shorten said.
“I want to say to the South Asians in Australia, the Labor Party wants you, we respect you, we want to seek your full engagement with the politics of this country.”, Mr Shorten added.