A LOCAL small businesswoman, qualified lawyer and director of a custom design project management company, Labor candidate Karyn Edelstein is proud to represent her Jewish roots in her run for the seat of Davidson.
“Almost all my maternal grandfather’s family were murdered during the Nazi occupation of Lithuania. An awareness of this, together with having been brought up in apartheid South Africa with its systemic, racialised discrimination informed my earliest interest in politics,” Edelstein told The AJN.
Edelstein moved to Australia from South Africa with her husband 33 years ago, moving from the eastern suburbs to Davidson in 2018. With three grown children, she is now focused on giving the people in the electorate a voice in the NSW government.
“Our family went to the then Temple David in Johannesburg where Rabbi Ben Isaacson led the congregation with a fierce opposition to the injustices of apartheid,” she said.
“His teaching of tikkun olam as the pursuit of social justice has a role in inspiring me to try make a difference as a strong voice for a better and more prosperous Davidson and NSW.”
Edelstein is a past president of Womanpower, a Jewish women’s organisation then affiliated to the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies instituted to teach and develop leadership skills in women.
Edelstein said local issues pressing the community included the effects of climate change on local bushland and fire control, cost of living pressures, staff shortages in hospitals and schools and falling education outcomes.
“The environment, climate change and overdevelopment feature prominently among voters in Davidson,” she said.
“Many have expressed frustration with insufficient bus services for commuters and school children, leading to safety issues and overcrowding.”
Edelstein sees antisemitism, Holocaust education and safety and security as the key issues facing the Jewish community in NSW.
“Antisemitic and other faith-based hate incidents are at the highest levels NSW has ever seen, with commensurate security costs.
“If elected, I would support enhanced Holocaust education in schools, the Jewish Museum and Courage to Care, as a means of identifying and counteracting antisemitism and other forms of prejudice.”