Cracking Communities - Tunnel Picket Leaflet
I was delighted to learn yesterday that the leaflet - Another Toll of the East West Link - was finalised. In fact the leaflet was already out there, being distributed in Fitzroy, Collingwood and Carlton, all places where the East West Link would cause immense destruction to homes, public spaces and communities.
I was delighted the leaflet was out there for several reasons.
The first is that its story - about the impact of the building of the Eastern Freeway in the 1970s on the homes and the community of Collingwood - is one that needs to be told. It also represents the determination of that community (some of whom were resident in the '70s) not to go through that pain and disruption a second time.
|Collingwood resident, Bianca, hamming it up for the camera|
Bianca is a cheerful, positive person, but the damage to her house gets her down. She is a firm opponent of the East-West Link. I know this because of the morning I spent with Keith in Collingwood recently talking to residents and taking pictures for the leaflet.
Despite the fact the the drought and other factors may have contributed to the cracking of their houses, many locals are in no doubt that a key factor was the impact on the water tables of the massive roadworks necessitated by the Eastern Freeway. For more pictures showing the extent of the damage in Collingwood see my post
I was also delighted to hear the leaflet was hitting letter boxes because of what it represents. Being involved in its production demonstrated to me how much creativity and diverse skills we tunnel picketers have at our finger tips and how keen people are to use them to advance our cause:
The leaflet was Keith's idea and he wrote the original words, as well as organising houses to visit, funding and distribution.
Andrew did a great job with the writing and design, about which Harriet and Rosie gave useful feedback.
I took the pictures and the leaflets will be distributed by a group of committed volunteers.
When you think that all this work was done collaboratively, rapidly and for free by just one small band of a much bigger core group of picketers, it seems to me a 'no-brainer' that in the end we will prevail - over a lumbering opposition hampered by red tape, motivated by money and with no ethos to unite them.
As Keith said yesterday, he believes we can win the battle with as few as our core group of sixty people, though of course it would be great to have many more. His comment reminded me of one of my favourite ever quotes - the one by Margaret Mead: 'Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.'
So if you are interested in distributing leaflets in your neighbourhood, just ask Keith. And in case you don't know him, this is what 'Napthine's Nemesis' looks like:
|Keith in action|