Helen Leach

NEWLY announced Bendigo East candidate Helen Leach has wasted no time criticising incumbent MP Jacinta Allan for Labor’s performance across four policy areas.

Ms Leach, a former City of Greater Bendigo councillor, has been endorsed to run for the Democratic Labour Party.

She has long been a vocal opponent of Safe Schools programs which are aimed at supporting LGBTQI students, but in a statement announcing preselection, she also takes aim at Labor for policies in energy, environment and public transport.

“Our education system is in bad need of a complete overhaul,” Ms Leach said.

“We also need to stop the lock out of the public from our forests.

“The ALP’s ‘review’ of national forests in Victoria is a thinly disguised plan to lock out everyone.

“I will oppose this and support the rights of ordinary Victorians to have access to all these areas.

“Locally we need to see a significant improvement in our rail system including duplication of the lines where necessary.”

Ms Leach said subsidies for renewable energy projects should stop.

“Like all industries, they need to pay their own way.”

Ms Leach is following former council ally Elise Chapman into politics.

Ms Chapman was preselected to run on the senate ticket for One Nation in the last federal election, but withdrew before the poll.

Ms Leach has been politically active behind the scenes, most recently helping in the campaign of Liberals candidate in Bendigo East, Ian Ellis.