LETTERS 4.8.18

A ‘disgrace’
IT’S a disgrace in these modern times that so much money is being wasted by government and local councils on unimportant things.
So much cost blow-out on major projects but nothing seems to be done for the homeless situation, which is increasing around the city.
Why can’t certain areas or the under-utilised Fremantle hospital be used as organised shelters?
Maybe a soup kitchen could be set up there and managed by social workers and volunteers.
Surely a good solid building like that, which is so much a part of Fremantle, could be used to serve the underprivileged in out community.
Barbara Strudwick
Queen Victoria St, Fremantle 

Watery grave
THE war on straws seems to be going well, with McDonald’s announcing that they will phase out the use of plastic straws by 2020.
But if you are concerned with keeping animals in the ocean safe, don’t just look to your drinking straw—look to your dinner plate.
Eating fish does far more harm to our oceans than sipping your drink through a straw ever will.
Abandoned, lost or discarded fishing gear — otherwise known as ‘ghost gear’ — is a  problem that spells catastrophe for marine life.
At least 640,000 tonnes of ghost gear are added to our oceans every year, killing and mutilating millions of marine animals including endangered whales, seals and turtles.
Swallowing plastic remnants from ghost gear leads to malnutrition, digestive blockages and death.
In the Pacific Ocean there is a floating patch of garbage twice the size of France and weighing roughly 88,000 tons.
While this enormous area, like our oceans at large, is full of plastic, scientists estimate that 46 per cent of the mass of the garbage patch comes from fishing nets alone.
And other types of fishing gear account for much of the rest.
While many people are stocking up on cloth shopping bags and signing petitions to ban single-use plastic straws to save the oceans, those who fish (or eat fish) need to re-examine their personal choices too.
It’s simple: less fishing means less fishing gear—abandoned or otherwise.
Commercial fishing kills hundreds of billions of animals worldwide every year. You can’t eat fish and call yourself an environmentalist.
Desmond Bellamy
Byron Bay, NSW

Sting in the tail
YOU’VE got to hand it to Melville council.
When it’s a choice between saving lives and saving trees, the latter wins every time. Take the first 100 metres of tree-lined Kintail Road in Applecross: For the last month havoc has reigned as heavy haulage vehicles wind their way between delivery vans, buses and drivers exiting a garage and a supermarket.
All competing with the never ending flow of traffic coming off Canning Bridge.
But never fear, amid all this chaos and life-threatening activity Melville council has guaranteed no tree will be in harm’s way by erecting a steel cage around one of the endangered species.
And we thought they didn’t care!
Barry Thornton
Kintail Road, Applecross

Effin disgrace

THIS photo of a bin at Brentwood Shopping Centre was taken last Saturday July 28.
This is not a one-off occurrence. It has been happening for years now.
The bins at this centre are always filthy, smelly and the bin-surround doors are frequently off their hinges.
I have lodged a number of complaints with the former Melville CEO Shayne Silcox, but to no avail.
Is this why the city has more than $100 million in cash reserves? Because the CEO, mayor Russell Aubrey and his cabal of councillors don’t spend our excessively-charged rates on basic services such as rubbish removal and cleaning of our public bins?
Aren’t our rates supposed to pay for rubbish removal and not be spent on competing with the private sector by buying expensive properties in Mt Pleasant without prior council approval?
It’s a disgrace, isn’t it?
Effie Nicholson

Victoria Hall correction
STEVE WELLS’ Thinking Allowed, ‘A community asset’, on Victoria Hall in last week’s Herald was excellent.
However I would like to correct his statement that the hall was saved in the 1970s by the Builders Labour Federation.
It was in fact the Fremantle Society that saved the hall by enlisting the support of the BLF.
The threat of a “green ban” did the trick.
For the full story see pages 40 to 43 in Fighting for Fremantle, the history of the Fremantle Society, 1972-2010, written by Ron and Dianne Davidson.
Don Whittington
Shuffrey Street, Fremantle

Don’t rush park revamp
WE are writing with reference to your front-page story “Hubbub over hub at Dixon” in last week’s Herald, expressing our support for the suggestion that Cockburn council refrains from making any hasty decisions about the development of Dixon Reserve into an integrated sport and recreation hub.
The three options that have been put forward for this area as part of the Western Suburbs Sporting Precinct Study are impractical, possibly due to a lack of consideration and consultation, including any aboriginal consultation.
To put playing fields over sloping landfill would be prohibitively expensive and would require several metres of retaining walls.
Dixon Reserve is part of the Roe 9 corridor and it makes no sense to be making multi-million dollar decisions until the whole parcel of land can be considered.
Community consultation does not close until August 24 and to be making announcements as to the future of the area at this time may preclude more informed decision making processes.
The development of this heritage precinct will have long-lasting implications.
As local community representatives we ask that council takes the time it needs to get it right.
We would like the development of Dixon Reserve to be temporarily removed from the WSSPS to allow for proper investigation, planning and consultation.
Hamilton Hill Community Group
Cockburn Community Wildlife Corridor
Save Beeliar Wetlands
South Beach Community Group
Coogee Beach Progress Association
Friends of Dixon Park
Friends of Blackwood Avenue Bushland
Friends of Clontarf Hill

WE love receiving letters so whenever you have something to say feel free to drop us a line. Send your letters to: The Editor, Fremantle Herald, PO Box 85, North Fremantle, WA , 6159. Or email them to: news@fremantleherald.com. Please remember to include your name, address and a daytime telephone number.

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