I have the very great pleasure of spending time in our community, be it through forums and community gatherings, or participating in political activities far and wide. This week however has seen way to many unpleasant occurrences for me to write a positive post. Contrary to some readers, I often refrain from writing when there isn’t good news to share or something positive, sometimes waiting considerably to post so I can add some good news to the mix.
So far it’s not been a good week for good news, I am horrified with the Refugee alterations being put forth Federally and the latest comments of the Opposition leader. I have glanced through the business papers for next WEDNESDAYS council meeting and can see a number of changes that don’t appeal. I of course will read them thoroughly before commenting however I am for the record supportive of all Public access to information and councillors… without a fight that might not continue… as I said more when I’ve read the fine print.
I attended the final Georges River Combined Councils meeting last night, which is always informative and interesting. Our Councillor rep Peter Ritevski did attend as did our staff. We celebrated some amazing outcomes for the River and the group and for our patch of the Georges… but towards the end we heard that the CMA, catchment management authority (the guys who watch over what ends up in the Georges via tributary’s and creeks are to lose nearly40% of their workforce to job cuts. I mention this because it distresses me greatly that few actually equate JOB CUTS to HUMAN INCOMES… some 40% of the people will lose their jobs either before or shortly after Christmas in a restructure….not only will the work not be done to the fine level it is now, but real people are going to be forced into unemployment! Not just one person, often this is whole families who are affected and my heart breaks. 700 jobs = 700 people and families at risk during restructure of the rail network, hundreds of teaching aid and education staff are looking at unemployment as are TAFE teachers. The list goes on, but it’s not a list of faceless affectless jobs, these are people, families. Chris Hayes said when every 1 job is created 2.3 other jobs come to… using his methodology for every 1000 people put into unemployment another 2300 people may lose their jobs or are affected adversely.
Please take a little time to consider this, it’s important that when you hear the evening news or read the papers, that the government is cutting the fat, or reducing the waste or refining the workforce…someone is losing their livelihood, someone’s child won’t be able to attend an excursion, or see a movie. They may be your neighbour, the guy up the road but they are real people, not just faceless men and women. They have families, they need food and housing. In January hundreds of mostly women will be ‘moved’ onto unemployment/ new start, where they will be forced to live on $242 a week…
I am lost… I don’t know what I can do but if nothing else I will remind everyone I come in contact with that these ARE PEOPLE, my fellow Aussies, the people I live down the road from. As I came to work earlier in the week, I saw a homeless woman sitting in the doorway of one of the shops on Elizabeth Drive… did she do something to deserve this, did she? Probably not! I heard a fellow a little while ago on the radio say he never thought it would happen to him, but he found himself homeless because he lost his job, he was attempting to find a place for his family to live, anywhere but the car… what is happening to us and our nation…do you have any of the answers?
Have a nice weekend, spend it with the ones you love and please, please think about how lucky you are. In the US its Thanksgiving, let us hope we remain the lucky country, let’s be thankful for what we have and do whatever we can to ensure our neighbours can do the same.