We’ll huff and we’ll puff and we’ll blow your youth detention centre down … that’s about as far as we have come in this campaign. I am not criticising those involved, or saying they are not active and passionate in their quest – but I do think the campaign has lost a fair bit of its momentum since the public rally last week.
Since then, people have returned to their daily lives and, as a consequence, the thrust of a unified community has been splintered.
This campaign needs a focal point, a strong representative group to solidify the voices of all those against this ridiculous decision. This group needs to be active now, apolitical, organised and funded.
Yes, as crass as that sounds, it will take dollars to generate the impact necessary to be heard in the right places. Public pressure is needed, and it needs to extend beyond the boundaries of the city of Wyndham.
The lack of political clout in Wyndham is a giant handbrake. The fact there is more than one petition, to me, is flawed, and to be honest, I am sure Daniel Andrews will treat this petition (or petitions) just like the East West Link contract. “It won’t be worth the paper it is written on.” Regardless of the volume of names, it will have little or no effect.
The SkyRail project on the other side of the city has sparked a similar public outcry, and it too has fallen on deaf ears in State Parliament. Between party politics and those who are beholden to the state government for funding, there is a gigantic chasm of power and influence.
The biggest drawback in so many ways is the man elected to represent us for these very issues – one Tim Pallas. The toxic dump saw our Labor representative taking on the Liberal Kennett government. We are not going to see anything like that in this instance.
This is a real test for our council. It will be interesting to see how hard they go and just what, if any, power they actually have. Huffing and puffing won’t do any good – we need action, and those at the coalface tell me they have a lot planned. I certainly hope it’s soon.