In the Media

Dignity Party launches campaign to hold onto seat in South Australian Parliament

Adelaide Advertiser | Lauren Novak

Dignity Party Leader Kelly Vincent at the launch of the party’s 2018 state election campaign. Kelly Vincent is wearing a Dignity Party Tshirt and black jacket. she is in her wheelchair smiling and behind her is a large book case with old leather-bound books. AAP Image/Dean MartinSHE’S leading the largest field of candidates put forward by the Dignity Party in a South Australian election contest – but the chances are slim.

Kelly Vincent is fighting amid a crowded field for re-election in a fortnight’s time.

Her minor party – formerly Dignity for Disability – faces tough competition from SA Best, as the Nick Xenophon name returns to where his career began in state Parliament’s Upper House.

The Greens and federal Senator Cory Bernardi’s Australian Conservatives (formerly Family First) are also scrapping for a handful of seats on the crossbench.

Ms Vincent admits it’s a challenge, but says her team “shows the diversity that is in the community” and is “representing people that the other parties have simply forgotten”.

It includes four Upper House candidates and 30 in Lower House seats, ranging in age from 19 to 75. Among them are nine women aged younger than 30.

The team, revealed at a campaign launch on Saturday, also includes three father-daughter duos, the state’s first deaf candidate, Donovan Cresdee, transgender candidate Madeline McCaul (who is running in Cheltenham against Premier Jay Weatherill) and Southern Sudanese refugee Esther Simbi in the Upper House.

Ms Vincent said she had spent her eight years in Parliament keeping the Government to account on delivering the National Disability Insurance Scheme, better public transport access and housing designs which are adaptable for people with a disability.

She also highlighted a deal struck with Labor – amid negotiations over the now-failed state bank tax – to deliver more than $40 million in initiatives. They include $10 million for a borderline personality disorder treatment service (also pledged by the Liberals) and funding for intensive home support for mental health patients and a disability health centre in Modbury.

“I want to stay around to see those things through,” Ms Vincent said.