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“THE STAR”, Tuesday, August 20, 2013 - PAGE 11

Call time on home violence He believes the problem needs a complete shift in cultural thinking and he does not think it will change until men challenge each other about it. “Guys would like to ignore the fact it happens because it’s behind closed doors but domestic violence is across all walks of life,” Mr Scrimshaw said. “The question is how to get the message out.” McMillan MHR Russell Broadbent came to Leongatha to meet with Mr Scrimshaw to discuss a plan of action. “I have a responsibility,” he said. Mr Broadbent is keen for community action of some kind and suggested it could take place through existing structures such as sporting clubs. “If there’s one thing people turn up to in the country it’s footy,” he said. He thought leaders of sporting clubs could be asked to dedicate one match in the season to highlighting the fact domestic violence is unacceptable. “We need to create ambassadors or converts to the cause because it’s the right thing to do,” Mr Broadbent said. Mr Scrimshaw agreed and will gather together a small group of like minds to work out some answers.

By Jane Ross LEONGATHA Salvation Army Captain Martyn Scrimshaw is spearheading a campaign to draw the community’s attention to the scourge of domestic violence. He said when he and his wife Heather were Salvation Army captains in Bendigo, a number of events were held on White Ribbon Day in November and he’d like to see something here in South Gippsland. This is because the Salvo staff who run a domestic violence service in Leongatha and Wonthaggi are seeing increasing numbers of women and have twice the caseload for which they’re funded. International White Ribbon Day began as a means of eliminating violence against women and to raise awareness among men and boys about the roles they can play to prevent violence against women. The problem of rampant domestic violence was highlighted at a recent public meeting in Wonthaggi and Mr Scrimshaw said it’s the same across the region. He blamed drugs, alcohol, generational behaviour, financial stress and people not coping.

Rubbish action BASS Coast Shire Council has been conducting a blitz on illegally dumped rubbish and it’s paying off. In the year to June 2013, officers have identified offenders, ordered them to remove the rubbish and reduced by almost 60 per cent the volume council has to take away, saving up to $40,000. Examples include: an Inverloch man was fined $1790 for failing to take away a large pile of rubbish which he had dumped metres from Screw Creek. He’d been directed to remove it by a community safety ranger and didn’t. A woman from Dalyston was ordered to remove two trailer loads of unwanted household items dumped near the Kilcunda Cemetery and was fined $289 for a littering offence A man from San Remo had to remove mattresses he’d dumped on Phillip Island and was fined $289 and a similar amount was

levied against a man from Richmond who had to remove bags of litter from a roadside at The Gurdies. Two other dumpers were directed to remove waste in order to avoid a fine. Council’s litter prevention officer Leanne Edwards said council is protecting the environment and saving money by holding the offenders responsible for illegal dumping. “In the past, council and other land managers, such as VicRoads and Parks Victoria, generally just removed illegal dumping as soon as they became aware of it,” Ms Edwards said. “Over the past 12 to 18 months, we have all been putting a lot more effort in to manually inspecting dumped rubbish with the aim of fining the offenders and making them responsible to clean up their own litter.” Apart from the unsightly appearance, Ms Edwards said dumped rubbish encourages weed growth and potentially damages waterways and the marine environment.

Yuk: a woman from Dalyston had to take away two trailer loads of this rubbish she had dumped near the Kilcunda Cemetery.

Action: Salvation Army Captain Martyn Scrimshaw and McMillan MHR Russell Broadbent discuss ways of raising awareness of the prevalence of domestic violence.

Council gas crackdown By Brad Lester WHAT is the highest source of greenhouse emissions produced by South Gippsland Shire Council? Council cars? Roadwork machinery? Council meetings? All wrong. Council’s landfill at Koonwarra produced a staggering 2,840 tonnes of carbon dioxide in 2011-12, ahead of public lighting (1362 tonnes), facilities (1,291 tonnes), roadwork equipment (1,246 tonnes) and cCouncil’s car fleet (735 tonnes). “Lots of people assume it is the cars that are going to produce the most because they are the most visible,” Council’s Sustainability Officer Heidi Hamm said. “The waste going there is from the community so Council’s ability to reduce emissions is actually quite difficult.” The amount of rubbish disposed by South Gippslanders fell from 17,603 tonnes in 2010-11 to 16,687 tonnes in 2012-13. The possible introduction of a kerbside green waste collection service – not ruled out in the future – could result in further savings.

“It is pretty amazing it has gone down. It could be because it costs people every time they take their waste to transfer stations and they are just trying to reduce their waste at home, and it could be because of increased composting at home,” Ms Hamm said. The landfill largely contributed to the 26 per cent rise in council’s carbon footprint from 2009-10 to 2011-12. That could all change under council’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan, due before Council for endorsement in November. Ms Hamm said the plan aims to lower Council’s greenhouse gases by 20 per cent of 2009-10 levels by 2020, to minimise Council’s contribution to climate change. The plan was an action of council’s Sustainability Strategy. That ambition is more specific than the Federal Government’s goal of between five and 15 or 25 per cent below 2000 levels by 2020. Council has approved some aspects of the plan, most recently the green street lighting program that will reduce carbon dioxide emissions from street lighting by 400 tonnes and save almost $50,000 per year. New cars are purchased with

consideration of their environmental impacts and efficient diesel models are favoured. Potential electricity saving measures within Council’s main office include power save mode on copiers and changing air-conditioning running times. Council could establish a Revolving Sustainability Fund to invest the financial savings made by aspects of the sustainability program into other fields of environmental benefit. The necessity of Council’s Sustainability Strategy has come under criticism from within the community as Council attempts to manage extreme budgetary pressures, but the financial savings and environmental benefits of the team’s works suggest otherwise. “When you talk to people, it’s all about why don’t you have solar panels on the roof. It’s visible but with energy saving projects you can’t see that,” Ms Hamm said. “We are really focusing on reducing our energy first before increasing the amount of energy that is being produced.” Most other Gippsland Councils have a sustainability or environmental plan, as well as a greenhouse gas reduction target.

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The Great Southern Star - August 20, 2013  

August 20 edition of South Gippsland's weekly newspaper.

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