The Greens commend the Blue Mountains Council staff, community and councillors who have publically campaigned to address serious asbestos safety issues. It is a serious misstep by the Local Government Minister to threaten to sack the council while WorkSafe NSW undertakes an inquiry.
While there are very real concerns with the transparency and thoroughness of council’s response to asbestos contamination, WorkSafe NSW is currently conducting its own independent inquiry to address this issue.
Greens MP and Local Government Spokesperson David Shoebridge said:
“The information about asbestos contamination has come to light through brave whistleblowers with the help of a local Greens Councillors.
“Greens Councillors are committed to transparency and ensuring that the community is protected from hazards such as asbestos.
“it would be an act of political bastardry to sack the very councillors who have been working with the community and staff to address this issue.
“The Local Government Minister and this State Government needs to back away from another heavy handed threat against a local councillor.
“Asbestos even in miniscule amounts can be lethal and there is a clear obligation to ensure its facility do not put its community at risk.
“Local democracy can be untidy but it’s the level closest to the people and Blue Mountains Council shows how an active councillor can force accountability.