- Regional and rural Queenslanders will hold protest rallies across the state this week to voice their opposition to new vegetation management laws that will make it harder to grow food.
AgForce General President Grant Maudsley said a groundswell of anger was building over the proposed changes with the community protests co-inciding with five Parliamentary committee hearings being held in regional Queensland over three days this week.
“These laws are the worst of both worlds. The Palaszczuk Government will make it harder for farmers to grow food and they won’t deliver the best environmental outcomes either,” he said.
“At a time when global demand for our great food and fibre is at all-time high, these laws will shut down new agricultural development opportunities in Queensland.
“Farmers just want fair and workable laws to grow more food, create jobs and look after their environment without being strangled in red tape. It’s pretty simple – if farmers can’t feed their own families, they can’t feed yours.”
The week of direct action will include:
• A rally at the Gracemere saleyards outside Rockhampton on Tuesday 27 March starting with a free sausage sizzle breakfast from 7am ahead of the public hearing starting at 9am
• A protest march in Townsville to the Member for Thuringowa Aaron Harper’s office on Tuesday 27 March starting at 12.30pm and a second rally at Soroptimist Park in Townsville ahead of the public hearing at Seagulls Seafront restaurant starting at 4pm
• A free barbecue lunch and protest at the Cloncurry Shire Hall on Wednesday 28 March starting at 12 noon ahead of the public hearing starting at 1.30pm
• A free barbecue breakfast and protest at the Longreach Stockman’s Hall of Fame on Thursday 29 March from 7am prior the public hearing starting at 8am
• A protest rally outside the Murweh Shire Town Hall in Charleville on Thursday 29 March gathering from 11.30am ahead of the public hearing starting at 1pm
Mr Maudsley urged anyone concerned about Queensland’s economic future and farmers’ ability to keep producing food to come along and show their support at the rallies this week.
“We’re calling on the Queensland Parliament to reject these flawed laws and instead work with those most affected by the changes to come up with a long-lasting solution that delivers good outcomes for both agriculture and the environment,” he said.
More details about the Parliamentary committee’s public hearings and their inquiry are available at: http://bit.ly/2IjmU0H