Samantha's Story

Samantha Ratnam is the Leader of the Victorian Greens and Member for Northern Metro.

Samantha Ratnam

Samantha has dedicated her life to fighting for social and economic justice; for climate and housing justice, equality and peace.

Samantha has represented her community for over a decade.

She was first elected to Local Government in 2012, and elected Mayor of Moreland (now Merri-Bek) in 2016, doubling her vote in her re-election and helping double the number of Greens elected to Council.

In 2017, she became the first woman to lead the Victorian Greens and has led the party through the pandemic and multiple elections, doubling the party room at the 2022 election. Sam is proud to have been leading our State parliamentary team for nearly 7 years – a team that is highly talented, united and poised for historic success.

Under her leadership, the Greens have secured the balance of power in the Victorian parliament, and have pushed Labor further and faster on climate, housing and integrity reform, freed up thousands of homes for renters, helped  end native forest logging and secured the first inquiry into the threat of far right extremism.

Samantha and the Greens team are fighting for a future where everyone has a quality affordable home, where we power our state with 100% renewable energy, not coal and gas, and where we tax big corporations and fund the things everyone needs.


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Samantha learned very early in life that the decisions politicians make can shape our lives.

She moved to Australia with her family when she was a child, because of the civil war that broke out in Sri Lanka. They came to Australia seeking peace and safety with nothing more than the suitcases they carried between them.

Samantha has worked hard to give back to the community that has given her so much and is a deeply committed and connected local.

Prior to entering politics, Samantha spent 15 years as a social worker, supporting people experiencing drug and alcohol issues and in settlement services for newly arrived migrants. She spent years working with Migrant Resource Centres and the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, assisting people to rebuild their lives after fleeing war.

Samantha holds Bachelors degrees in Arts and Social Work, from the University of Melbourne and a PhD that investigated young people’s experiences of belonging, participation and global citizenship.

She has loved calling Brunswick home for over 15 years with her husband, Colin, and 3 year old daughter, Malala. She can often be found on a squash court at Fitzy’s that she credits with keeping her energised!

In a wealthy country like ours, no one should be left behind. The Greens have a bold plan for a future where we tackle the climate crisis and make sure no one is left to struggle. Change is possible, if enough of us fight for it.

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