Letters to the editor | April 13, 2018

OUTDOOR FUN: Baxter Stasinowsky, 8, of Rainbow was on hand to test out the new Rainbow skate park at its official opening this week. Picture: ELIJAH MACCHIA
OUTDOOR FUN: Baxter Stasinowsky, 8, of Rainbow was on hand to test out the new Rainbow skate park at its official opening this week. Picture: ELIJAH MACCHIA

Feedback on road rules

WE WANT to know what Victorians think about our state’s road rules.

The Liberal Nationals believe road rules should be based on common sense. Recently, too many road rules have been designed by bureaucrats. Some of their ideas might be good on paper, but in the real world they can create more problems than they fix.

Too often under Labor, motorists have been cut out of decision-making on speed limits and road rules. Changes have often been made haphazardly, without any public consultation, and have been either announced at short notice or not announced at all. This can create confusion.

That’s why we’ve announced the state-wide Common Sense Road Rules survey, which is now available online. We want to know what Victorians think about a range of issues, including red lights on freeway merges, differential speed limits for trucks, and freeway speed limits.

We also want to know the community’s ideas for rules that should be changed, or new rules that should be considered. We’ll announce our policies on these issues, once we’ve looked at what Victorians have had to say. You can access the survey at bit.ly/commonsenseroadrules 

Matthew Guy, Opposition Leader 

Sheep deaths shock

IN THE wake of the shocking, cruel deaths of 2800 sheep exported from Perth on the Awassi Express, the Greens are calling on the federal government to withdraw permission for the ship to load the current flock of sheep in Fremantle. We also call for the live sheep trade to be wound up.

Agriculture Minister David Littleproud must act to end the cruelty and mass deaths of thousands of sheep. He must stop sheep being loaded onto the Awassi Express.

The Minister has said he is very concerned by the footage. But those words will mean nothing and he will effectively be condoning the horrific and illegal acts that were revealed this week on national television, unless his words are backed up by action. 

Mass deaths of sheep on export boats is sadly not a one-off occurrence. It’s happened before, but the difference this time is we have video evidence.

Here in Victoria, as the biggest lamb and mutton producing state in the country, we don’t want to see Australian-grown animals sent off on ships with their welfare at risk.

It is a win-win for us to process and package meat here in Australia for export, supporting local jobs.

The Minister has a choice – to transition the industry away from live exports and build our  Australian processing industry for boxed, chilled meat export, or he can be complicit in facilitating further cruelty.

Janet Rice, Federal Greens agriculture spokeswoman 

Gambling prevention push

THE Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation encourages local organisations to apply for funding of up to $50,000 ex GST for gambling harm prevention projects under our Prevention Grants for Regional and Rural Victoria program.

The program supports collaborative projects that investigate the impact of gambling harm on regional and rural communities, raise awareness of the risks of gambling harm, increase our knowledge of effective prevention practices, and build local capacity to deliver gambling harm prevention programs. 

There is a spectrum of gambling harm, from low to severe. Typically, it involves one or a combination of financial hardship, emotional distress, family conflict and difficulty with work or study, and it can happen much earlier than many people realise. 

Gambling harm is a community issue that requires a community response. We want to support you to develop local initiatives. 

For more information, visit www.responsiblegambling.vic.gov.au/regional; applications close at 5pm on Thursday, May 3.

Louise Glanville, chief executive, Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation

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