Important work worth recognising
Having been in Ballarat the past four months to help my mother's transition into the BUPA Nursing Home in Delacombe after 60+ beloved years in her own home, I knew she had considerable concerns about moving into 'institutionalised' care for many decades prior to the move. She clearly preferred to die at home… The fact that she now gratefully calls BUPA 'home' is not only a significant testament to her mental and emotional ability to accept 'what is' but of critical importance, is the outstanding level of compassionate, proactive and competent care she has received from every level of staff there. I'm inspired by and committed to organisations that authentically 'live' their values rather than just espouse them. In my experience, the staff at BUPA in Delacombe are living the espoused values of being passionate, caring, open, extraordinary, accountable, courageous and authentic and they deserve payment commensurate with the best of industry standards. In the view of my family, the skilled service they provide is exemplary. I call on the BUPA senior executives at the national level however, to acknowledge and appropriately honour the brilliance of the human resources here who represent their organisation and to display one vital value that is not currently on their agenda: fairness.
Stuart Porteous, Premaydena
Wrong project, wrong place
Last week's announcement by the Andrew's government that it has issued permits for the redevelopment of Ballarat station doesn't mean the project is any good, or that it is what Ballarat needs. More than 90% of Ballarat people responding to a Courier survey in March were clear that they want the station to be developed but, as a more up-to-date and effective transport hub, and that they did not support sale of land at the site for either a hotel or for economic development uses by the private sector. Since then, the government has done nothing to alter public perceptions. None of our Labor parliamentarians have fronted a public meeting despite numerous requests to do so. Requests to minister's offices for information have been ignored. Formal FOI's have been allowed to run for months beyond the statutory response dates.
The Andrews government is pushing through with this unwanted and unpopular project. They don't listen to ordinary voters and don't feel the need to explain themselves. They have the arrogance of Kennett. Their only grace is that they are spending money in Ballarat; albeit on the wrong projects in the wrong places. If only their efforts on the station could be turned toward a coherent plan that directly benefits the commuting public, they would be applauded. They are irrevocably compromising the ability of the station to meet the needs of a growing Ballarat in the years ahead. Parking is chronic now. What will it be like in another decade? They have shown themselves over the entirety of this project as incapable of thinking long term. Why else would the multi-deck car park be announced only after SOS Ballarat pointed out that they'd miscounted the available at-level parks? Why else would they subsequently announce a third level on the car park only after we pointed out that public car parks were 180 short of current numbers? Why else a belated announcement of a yet-to-be-designed bus interchange that includes the previously overlooked local buses only after the fiasco in Lydiard St? Why else would they spend $550m on upgrading the Ballarat-Melbourne line and stations and leave Ballarat station as the only one that fails to comply with disability access standards?
The State Government continue to lurch from one knee-jerk solution to another. More money will needed to get them out of the messes they are creating. This is not the ideal image to take to the 2018 election.
John Barnes, On behalf of Save Our Station SOS Ballarat group