Mackay's Frank Gilbert is running for a senate seat.
Mackay's Frank Gilbert is running for a senate seat. Caitlan Charles

Gilbert wants to give CQ another voice in parliament

WITH a passion for politics that began as a teenager, ALP candidate Frank Gilbert is trying to take a life-long fight to Canberra by contesting a seat in the Senate.

In the 2016 election, Mr Gilbert gave Dawson MP George Christensen a run for his money, gaining a swing of 4.24 per cent in two-candidate-preferred count.

With a strong, but not quite successful punt at the seat under his belt and his wife, Julieanne Gilbert, the State Government member for Mackay, Mr Gilbert is no stranger to the political landscape of Dawson.

Mr Gilbert told the Daily Mercury he thought it was important to make sure the central and northern parts of Queensland were represented in the Senate.

"I believe this part of the world needs Senate representation and to be an extra voice for us in parliament,” he said.

"My values have always been about supporting the people who are less well off, the people who are underprivileged and I don't believe in trickle-down economics.

"I believe the government's role is to make sure that everyone in society has a fair chance ... that means having a good health system, a good education system that is accessible to all people without any relationship to their means.

"I think the Labor party history has shown that we have done that, probably more than any other party.”

Mr Gilbert said it was all well and good to have an opinion, but he believed in participation.

"I've run a few times, I'd like to be in parliament, but for me that's not the important thing,” he said.

"It's the fight, the participation, standing up for your values. All the people here today (at the pre-poll centre), I probably fundamentally disagree with ... but I really admire them because they are participating in the process.”

Mr Gilbert said part of this commitment was being involved in the community. He's worked as a teacher throughout regional Queensland, worked with Lifeline as a crisis support councillor and has been involved with St Vincent de Paul.

"That is part of why politics is not a separate thing for me, it's part of how I live my life, it's about trying to bring social justice into the world,” he said.