Originally published 27Mar2008
TV CREW IN MULLLUMBIMBY THURS & FRIDAY 28March
Today/Tonight crew will be in Mullumbimby today and tomorrow, interviewing and wandering around town from noon today until 2 pm when they interview Chris Abrahams outside the council chambers. We'd like to see as many people as possible in the background with banners.
Friday (tomorrow) they will be in town from 11 - 2pm - at Lulu's around 2pm.
Following is basically the message:
Outcomes We Want from Today Tonight Story
We want to alert people across Australia about what is happening here in Mullumbimby, and that it could happen in their own town. We are in a growing line of communities that have protested against Woolworths development, including Griffith, Sandgate (Brisbane), Lane Cove (Sydney), Maleny and Kempsey. In each of these communities monetary might and political clout has won out over the voice and actions of the local people.
We want it to be known that we are part of a growing wave of citizens who recognize the destructive impact of multinational corporations co-opting their town's economy and that this destruction cannot continue. We want people to know that it matters a great deal how and where they shop, and that shopping is an active decision. Each time we buy something we are supporting a particular business practice as well as the ethics of that business practice. We want people to know how and where their food was produced and how many food-miles it has traveled. We want to know if we are buying a local product or a foreign one; supporting local farmers or overseas ones. We want people to be aware of how multinational corporations suck the blood out of local communities and contribute massively to global warming.
We are outraged that the NSW State Department of Planning over-rode Byron Shire Council's objection to the development, and that the community was not listened to by the government. We are outraged that, in the face of all that we know about the importance of strengthening local economies, Woolworths may be allowed to come to our town. We want people tell State Planning Minister Sartor, as well as our Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, that this blatant abuse of democratic process is not acceptable.
Some reasons why we don't need Woolworths in Mullumbimby are as follows:
Woolworths offer minimal financial support to local communities compared
to local businesses, who regularly donate many tens of thousands of dollars
while also offering other forms of support to local causes. This support
keeps our local sporting clubs, community groups and the arts alive.
Many local retailers provide personalised services to their customers
while Woolworths do not. These will be lost if local businesses are forced to
downsize or cease trading.
Woolworths plan to build a bigger supermarket than the one in Byron - with a bottleshop - surrounded by tarmac, close to the gateway of our town. Besides being an eyesore, this development is totally out of character with the residential setting, as well as with the small-business diversity of our town.
Fragmentation of our town centre will diminish the cohesion,
sustainability, and unique character of Mullumbimby and the heart of our
The growing impact of global warming and peak oil makes it more important
than ever to support our local producers and merchants in creating a
resilient, vibrant, and sustainable local economy. In and around Mullumbimby
we have a rich, creative community, cultural diversity, experience and the fertile lands to create a model of localized sustainability. We've got what it takes!