Jo with John Robertson and supporters at her campaign launch

NSW Opposition Leader John Robertson joined locals at Ashfield’s Pratten Park for a community BBQ – launching Jo Haylen's campaign for the new state seat of Summer Hill at the weekend.

Around 100 people attended the launch, enjoying a sausage sizzle and a game of cricket in the winter sun. Ms Haylen said she felt honoured to be the Labor Candidate for Summer Hill - and promised to work hard to restore values of equality and fairness to state government decision-making.

“I’ve lived and worked here for the last 10 years and there is nowhere I’d rather be,” Ms Haylen said.

“We have a real community ethic in the inner west – people look out for each other and neighbours know each other’s names. And there is a vibrant spirit of people getting involved to make our area an even better place to live – these are the values I want to take to Parliament.

“State government is about more than just service delivery – it has a very real role to play in building our community. That is a critical project that must be guided by values of fairness, equity and looking after those who most need a hand.

“Now more than ever we need Labor to be a strong, progressive force full of ideas to improve peoples’ lives. That’s what I’ve tried to do as Mayor of Marrickville, and what I will do if I have the great honour of representing our community in the NSW Parliament.

“I will be fighting hard. We cannot let the Baird Government do to TAFE what Tony Abbott is doing to our universities, nor can we let them charge a co-payment in our public hospitals,” Ms Haylen said.

Opposition Leader John Robertson said he was pleased to have a strong female candidate who is in touch with the needs and concerns of people living in Summer Hill.  

“Labor is about putting people first – that’s why it’s so critical to have someone like Jo, who understands the concerns of locals, to advocate for the community in the halls of Parliament,” Mr Robertson said.

The Member for Marrickville, Carmel Tebbutt said: "It says a lot about Jo that she has chosen to launch her campaign at a community BBQ. I know she will be a passionate advocate for the people of Summer Hill and will get results thanks to her genuine commitment and work ethic.”

In 2013, NSW electorate boundaries changed – with the electorate of Marrickville replaced by the new electorates of Summer Hill and Newtown.

Suburbs in Summer Hill include parts of Ashfield, Haberfield, Ashbury and Lewisham as well as Summer Hill, Marrickville and Dulwich Hill.