Much has happened since my last blog entry yesterday morning. The 3rd
of July was the 50th birthday of one of the protestors on the roof at the site,
Janine. The community rallied around the day, with much singing of happy
birthday and sharing of cake throughout the day. There was a general feeling of
elation due to the announcement that the CFMEU
had withdraw labour from the site.
As part of a show of community spirit, donations were collected from
assembled on the ground protestors to buy the rooftop protestors birthday curries
all round from local Tecoma eatery Saffron
The celebrations continued, however at around 10pm last night, it is
alleged that security guards pulled Janine off the hoarding, after accepting an
offer of birthday cake from her, resulting in her being hospitalised.
I went down to the site last night after hearing of the alleged assault,
community members there were angry about the unfolding events and took it up
with the local police as well as security staff on site, but with very little
success from all accounts. You could see signs of the scuffle with broken
hoardings and detached chicken wire (I think the chicken wire is in place to
stop paste ups).
In chatting to Janine today she sustained 2 broken fingers, 2 fine
fractures to another 2 fingers, cuts and bruises, however was in good spirits
after being very shaken last night. She has an interesting story to tell
regarding the events of last night, but I'll leave her to detail that in her
statement to police.
The CFMEU have reaffirmed their decision to
walk off the construction site after a follow up meeting today at Trades Hall
with the Building Industry Group (see news.com.au story here).
It was reported today by community
campaigners that the construction company Lanskey Construction and the
demolition company Whelan the Wrecker are both fully unionised companies.
When I visited the site today, the community had taken to the hoardings
and turned them into an enormous blackboard. Community members flanked both the
front of the site and the gate entry to the construction site. An addition
today was the Eureka flag, flown to acknowledge the support of the CFMEU. I
can also report that a new set of protestors are now camped out on the rooftop. A local family visited the site with a steaming pot of home made soup for all the protestors on site.
In terms of council, all paperwork, permits and permissions are in
place for the demolition. In terms of
permissions and paperwork for the construction, the construction management plan and some
sections of the Condition one permit (what needs to be amended on the plans according
to the VCAT decision) are still being assessed and worked through, but I expect
that will be finalised very soon.
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