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West Arnhem Regional Council (WARC) has once again been recognised as a leader in environmental sustainability at the 2016 Territory Tidy Towns Awards ceremony.
WARC picked up a number of awards for Jabiru at the ceremony, which was held in Darwin on 21 October, including the Mobile Muster Award, Waste Management Award and the Resource Recovery Award, which was the 10th win in a row.
West Arnhem Regional Council Service Manager Ian Lindsay, who has picked up a number of Territory Tidy Towns Awards in the past, also received a special award, which recognises 10 consecutive years in Jabiru.
Ian said he would like to thank his staff members who have worked hard to maintain the standard of waste segregation.
“This involves the separation of recycle products at the landfill site from the waste stream,” he said.
“The project was put in place a decade ago, and has seen valuable recycling products removed from the site instead of being buried giving the Resource Recovery award to WARC for the past 10 years.”
Ian said council staff has also been working hard at the landfill site, making changes to how the waste is managed.
“This has resulted in the additional award this year being presented to WARC for the best practice of waste management which now brings the operation of the landfill site in-line with the NT regulations and legislation – a procedure that was well overdue as we are in a World Heritage-Listed National Park.”
Ian said council would also like to thank the public who are assisting in making the landfill operations a success by placing their recycling in the bays provided and placing their household waste on the tip face, as close to the edge as possible.
“This makes it a lot easier for the staff to clear the tip face and helps keep it clean,” he said.
The Jabiru community can also help WARC win the Mobile Muster Award again next year by bringing in any old mobile phones and accessories to the office for recycling.
The Territory Tidy Towns Awards program recognises and acknowledges the hard work undertaken by remote and regional community groups, schools, individuals, businesses and councils, and showcases innovative ideas and initiatives that improve social and environmental development and sustainability in regional areas.
This year’s event was also a significant one as Keep Australia Beautiful Council Northern Territory (KABCNT) celebrated 40 years of being incorporated in 2016.
The awards night also ran in conjunction with the Territory Tidy Towns and Australian Day Forum.
To coincide with White Ribbon Day, the City of Melton ran a Coffee Cup Campaign encouraging residents to reject violence against women.
For a week in late November, coffee cups at cafes and restaurants in the Victorian municipality were printed with the message, “It’s just a joke: No. It’s not. How we speak about women affects how people see and treat them.”
The Coffee Cup Campaign coincided with White Ribbon Day on 25 November, a date declared by the United Nations General Assembly as the international day for the elimination of violence against women.
City of Melton Mayor Sophie Ramsey said Council was proud to be involved in the Coffee Cup Campaign.
“We know that one in three women have experienced physical or sexual violence since the age of fifteen,” the Mayor said.
“Putting a stop to this starts with challenging gender inequality and building greater respect between men and women in the home, in the workplace and in our whole community.
“Our Coffee Cup Campaign reinforces that how we speak about women affects how people see and treat them. Putting women and girls down is no joke.”
The Coffee Cup Campaign was delivered in partnership with Djerriwarrh Health Services.
If you or someone you know is experiencing or being affected by sexual assault or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit www.1800RESPECT.org.au
Tweed Shire Council has spoken out against aggression directed at Council staff.
General Manager Troy Green has urged community members to show basic respect to Council staff after a number of recent incidents of aggression towards Council staff and contractors.
Over the past three years, there has been a marked increase in incidents of verbal and physical aggression and what were once viewed as isolated events have become a common occurrence for some council workers.
Most staff involved in verbal aggression don’t report incidents because it is not viewed as something that can be controlled.
Troy Green believes these incidents are caused by the minority in the community and that generally Council staff have positive experiences with the public.
“It’s very unfortunate that the positive relationships our staff are building are being overshadowed by incidents of aggression,” he said.
“Council staff are not ‘fair game’ for abuse or aggression; everyone has the right to work in an environment free from aggressive behaviour.
“Recently a number of incidents have resulted in physical altercations or near misses and we are concerned for the welfare of Council staff.”
A recent example is an incident of alleged aggression involving a contracted traffic controller on a regional work site that has been referred to police.
Council workers at Kennedy Drive have also experienced severe threats and abuse.
Council has also received reports of vehicles ignoring the directions of traffic controllers and potentially risking the safety of workers and other road users.
“Our staff members have a job to do, often in difficult conditions, and we do not tolerate aggression towards them at any time – verbal or physical,” Mr Green said.
“Council understands and appreciates that roadwork delays can be frustrating, but that does not give motorists the right to abuse someone who is on a work site doing their job and trying to keep people safe.
“Our staff are part of the Tweed community, whether they’re working the weighbridge, Council rangers, or our front-counter staff.
“We have systems in place to report incidents of aggression and we will not hesitate to refer matters to the police.”