Anjalee De Silva for Monash

Meet Anjalee De Silva for Monash
Mount Waverley ward

If you live in the Mount Waverley ward of Monash, this is why you may consider to vote for Anjalee.

If elected what will be your priorities?

If elected, I would do my utmost to work as part of a Greens team to deliver outcomes that best serve all residents and ratepayers. I’m particularly passionate about retaining our garden city character, and about creating a community that’s as safe and liveable as possible for as many people as possible. Mount Waverley is such a beautiful, nature-filled place to live and I will fight to make sure that remains the case.

I’m also passionate about combatting violence against women and girls and improving factors that influence public safety, including the physical design of our urban environment.

Finally, I’m deeply conscious that Council has a key role to play in tackling the Climate Emergency. Measures directed at reducing emissions and assisting communities to adapt to climate change are critically important and, in my view, Monash can do much more.

Do you think your local council is appropriately representative of your community and its interests?

No, I do not think that it is.

Monash is a large suburban Council, with 200,000 residents living right in the middle of Melbourne’s expanding multicultural population. 52% of our population is female, and yet only 2 out of 11 current Councillors are women. 45% of our population were born overseas, and more than a third are from non-English-speaking backgrounds, yet only 1 out of 11 current Councillors is a person of colour.

Over the last few years, I’ve watched a majority of the Council ignore issues that are important to women and minorities again and again. Instead, our councils should represent all of us, and I want to be part of that change in Monash.

What would you like to say to a potential voter to vote for you?

My skills, knowledge, and experience puts me an ideal position to implement measures that benefit our whole community in an accountable and transparent manner. 

I have been a practising lawyer for over a decade and have worked in London, Hong Kong, and Melbourne. I am also an academic, and recently completed my PhD in anti-discrimination law.

Having been born in Sri Lanka and experienced my own journey as an immigrant, I believe that I am uniquely placed to contribute to supporting and communicating with Monash’s multicultural community. That includes Monash’s extensive Asian community, which makes vital contributions to the local area.

Further, I have been committed to issues of social and environmental justice throughout my life and career, and have expertise in serving and effecting social justice outcomes for vulnerable members of communities. For example, my PhD thesis focuses on combating harmful speech directed at women and girls. I have also previously worked in the community legal sector assisting Australia’s diverse migrant communities.

As a member of the Victorian community dDo you think migrant communities are appropriately looked after by the mainstream political parties in Victoria?

From a lack of understanding of the needs of diverse communities, to overtly racist rhetoric and policies, I think both the Liberal and Labor parties have gravely failed Victoria’s migrant communities. I am running as a Greens-endorsed local government candidate as I firmly believe that the Greens represents our best chance at achieving social and environmental justice for all Australians, including those within migrant communities.

As Victorian of Indian/Asian descent what do you miss most about India / your country of origin here or what do you fondly remember?

One of the things I miss most about Sri Lanka is the incredibly strong sense of community there that brings people together and guides their interactions with one another. If I am elected, I hope to work tirelessly to foster a similar sense of community in Monash.

On the issue of handling of COVID-19 pandemic in Victoria, Anjalee did not feel appropriate to comment.