A Political day In Liverpool

Signe Westerberg Headshots FAV (26 of 102)I started off the day attending the Liverpool Transport Taskforce, I was impressed that this month two council staff were in attendance and Bill from Interline. [Reminder to self, time to type up those minutes 🙂 ] These amazing residents get together every month to work through and understand the needs of public transport users in Liverpool and ways to make their journey easier. Not unlike the 2168 Action group that meets every 2nd Monday of the month at Miller Hub.

Then off to a chamber of commerce meeting with the small business MP Katrina Hodgkinson and Stuart Ayres MP for Fair Trading. Listening to the questions of local business people is always interesting and so totally different to the questions asked at the meeting that followed. I understand priorities are very different but am always blown away by the entirely different perspectives. It was very nice of Harry Hunt to invite me, I do feel he genuinely does try to engage with people from all walks of life to his credit and he mentioned he is keen to speak and share ideas with many small business people in the community by organising workshops and info sessions. I’ll share more as things evolve.

I then attended the Community Cabinet, it proved to be all I expected – locals asking for more and the MP’s harking back to the previous government .  3 years in it’s about time they focused forward instead of behind. As I said to a few, I feel no guilt regarding each of the past govts as I vote Green, but seriously Brad Hazzard didn’t offer one answer that didn’t’ include what he was left with, how it was before  etc, etc, etc.  When will politicians learn that pretty much no one wants to hear about the past, they want to hear about what will be, what can be and what should be done NOW. If you have to live in the past tell us what you learned from it, not just how different you are from it.

After Melanie Gibbons MP welcoming everyone into the room (as host ) it was interesting to see she failed to acknowledge Cllr Harle, even though she’d said hello to him at the door and he was sitting in the front row… She did however go to great lengths to ensure that the few Liberal councillors in attendance were recognised and introduced.  I tweeted a similar comment and low and behold Cllr Harle did finally get acknowledged and got the opportunity to ask about the Container Deposit Scheme, sadly no commitment from the Premier – but the question did manage a laugh from the him when reminded that his counterpart in Victoria was waiting for NSW to lead the way.

I would also like to remind Pru Goward that not all housing clients are mental patients, drug addicts etc etc,  this is twice now I’ve heard her refer to housing clients thusly (the first time on a 702 interview) and as I grew up in a housing commission home with hard working, caring parents I find it offensive that all are tarnished with her brush of elitism. I do accept I am sensitive to this as the derogatory statements I often hear come from those who never experienced our lives and who often sit on high and pass judgement without acknowledging what so many of us have achieved despite our modest beginnings . Her comment to the Church Minister who was seeking help with support for Refugees to which she said (I paraphrase) they don’t pay tax and they are technically a Federal Problem and she was pleased that the NGO’s carried (shared) the load … clearly not word for word but you get the idea. She also commented that we would most certainly understand why she has taken the steps she has at Millers Point, well no I don’t really, while the real estate may now be very valuable, this is and has been the home for many of those residents for longer than the real estate has been worth what it is now, all was fine when it was the working class strugglers, poorer part of town, but now the location is desirable they should be turned out, I don’t think so and I’ve not heard of one decent option being offered to those residents to relocate locally so as not to lose their identity their friends and their homes. Seems you’re only as valuable as the location in which you live, unless where you live is now desirable.

On a positive note, Gladys Berejiklian committed to raising the Holsworthy Rail Parking station where possible after attending the site today (yesterday) and accessing the issues faced by Liverpool commuters.

With so many people asking questions I was hopeful that someone would ask a questions regarding youth unemployment and the attacks on TAFE,  by the time I raised my hand there was little chance of getting a shot and so many left disappointed in not being able to ask their questions. It did seem to help if you knew Melanie though,  😛 Everyone did however get the opportunity to leave a question for a minister to answer sometime down the track.

There seems to be a trend with Liberal politicians that surprises me, whether local or state they feel the need to enter into conversations while others are either speaking or in this case asking questions. What happened to good old fashioned good manners? At one stage the noise coming from the front (MP) table made it difficult to hear the questioner with a microphone.  Perhaps only noticeable from the front row where I was sitting in front of the Premier.

It was great catching up with a number of dedicated caring Liverpudlians, people who continue to raise their issues, asking for someone in government to actually listen to their concerns.

In fairness a good turnout, 450 or more people coming out on a rainy Monday night. Some of my colleagues will be interested to note that 3/1 male questioners than female and the men’s questions were quite often much longer. I was hopeful with a female host some more women would have been given the nod. Also a quick congrats to Harry and the staff at the Comfort Inn for providing a nice supper for all the attendees, an unexpected inclusion.

I came home in time to watch Q and A in China, while  typing this I was so thoroughly impressed with the standard of both the English spoken but the quality of the audience questions and the basic courtesy’s they show each other.. A questioner is now asking when China can have their own version of Q and A, ahhh the things we take for granted 🙂  These panelists are really articulate, interesting people to listen too. I wonder when listening to all these great questions with many asking, wanting, wishing for the democracy we take for granted… I love that Cheng Lei answered with  ‘with democracy comes responsibility’, something I think we should be reminded of as well. Democracy is wonderful but potentially dangerous when the details are ignored and big business has more say than the average tax payer.

There were lots of questions, several on the Intermodal, some on Badgerys Creek airport, others on Migrant assistance and more and I”ve only covered a few.

Well that’s my take on the day and my two cents worth, I hope if others participated last night they take the time to comment and share their views. I also heard a very productive meeting was held with Pru Goward during the day as well and if the participants would like to share by all means do I look forward to posting your comments also.

Note in your diary the Market Night to be held in Macquarie Street on the 3rd May. As it is your rates money  providing them,  I hope many Liverpudlians come out to see, enjoy and experience what is touted the first of these monthly events to enliven the city centre. There is also a new website you could have a look at http://www.buildingournewcity.com.au you will have a chance to comment on the different ideas and there are some events you might like to put in your diary.

Please don’t forget your comments are welcome here, even those that don’t agree with mine, I don’t vet or change them, I post them as you send them in, I do not endorse bad or racist  language and I don’t use this site to promote commercial websites, sadly it seems many companies now are commenting on blogs just to get their advertising out there.

Looking forward to hearing from you…


oops nearly forgot…Yahoo..Scott Ludlam re elected to the Senate..onya Scott, well done Greens WA on such a great increase in numbers.


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