Labor Leader Mark McGowan said disenfranchised students should pitch in to change it.

“Don’t’ lose faith in democracy; we are very lucky to have democracy… if you’re unhappy with what’s going on the best way to change it is to get involved. Copping out and being cynical doesn’t help change things,” Mr McGowan said during a visit to Curtin last month.

“Obviously there’s been some pretty dramatic things happening in the United States which I think has put some people off, and there’s some things going on in Australia which put a lot of people off but if you are upset by things the best way to do something about that is to get involved.”

He also pointed to Labor’s plan to tackle drugs in WA, primarily with specific rehabilitation prisons for methamphetamine addicts, and harsh punishments for dealers.

“This is a big issue in WA; there’s about 4% of people in WA who are addicted to methamphetamine which is extraordinarily high,” Mr McGowan said.

We’ve launched a comprehensive plan to deal with supply and demand including meth rehabilitation prison—so when you go to prison you get proper rehabilitation and support when you leave—to try and get off the stuff—it has rehabilitation centres both in the city and the country, education in schools, and it has penalties for dealers.”

McGowan remembers his own university experience fondly.

I studied at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, in a double degree in Arts and Law, that was in the 1980s,” he said.

“I had a wonderful time at uni; I made friends I still keep in touch with, I lived in a residential college for my first four years. I grew up in the country so I ended up at a college to live as a 17-year-old in 1985, and I was there for 5 years and it was a great experience.”