Brunswick electorate: community safety forum
I rise to thank members of the Brunswick community who attended the community safety forum at the Brunswick town hall on Monday, 19 November, hosted by me and the federal member for Wills, Kelvin Thomson. A minute’s silence was observed at the commencement of the evening in memory of Jill Meagher. Over 170 local residents were in attendance and heard a full range of comprehensive presentations from senior members of Victoria Police; the mayor of Moreland City Council, Oscar Yildiz; executive officer of WISHIN (Women’s Information Support and Housing in the North), Trish O’Donohue; Michelle Noon from the White Ribbon Foundation; and the president of the Sydney Road Traders Association, Rohini Ratnakar.
There was significant time set aside for questions and comments, and the discussion that followed was extremely constructive and considered.
Key issues raised by the community included the need for better lighting and amenity and to address problems with transport and taxi services, improvements to planning and design and the possibility of obtaining contributions from developers and venues to assist with safety measures and infrastructure. I am pleased that the council has already acted swiftly to institute an audit of lighting throughout the municipality post this forum. There was also much discussion during the evening about the fundamental importance of preventing violence against women, both in the street and in the home, where, as we know, most assaults occur. The forum was an important part of listening to community concerns, coming up with practical ideas and actions and giving community members information and advice about safety in their streets and homes. I would like to place on record my thanks to Moreland City Council for helping to facilitate the event and in particular to Victoria Police for its comprehensive contribution.