Beautiful display of generosity
Last weekend was bitterly cold in Warrnambool. I was visiting from Melbourne and silly me didn't bring warm enough clothes.
I set about buying a jumper and was finding it hard when I saw a rack in a clothes shop with coats. None of them my size.
The beautiful lady serving said she had one in her car that would fit me and I could have it for free as she was going to give it to a crisis centre before Christmas but didn't get around to it.
It was brand new with the tags still attached.
I was very grateful and told her I would give it to a crisis centre when I got home.
I have decided to add to it with beanies, gloves and scarves and pay it forward. It was so nice to see such generosity.
We need more people like this.
Carina Doolan, Cranbourne West
Plea to ban duck hunting
In 1990 WA banned duck shooting. In 1995, NSW did the same followed by Queensland in 2005.
All done by successful state governments under the leaderships of Carmen Lawrence, Bob Carr and Peter Beattie.
Approximately 1500 registered shooters in Victoria are bolstered by many illegal shooters.
Between March and April each year they kill and maim countless native water birds while intruding on and damaging our environmentally fragile wetlands.
The Andrews government fails to justify its support for this hopelessly outdated activity that threatens our wildlife, already badly affected by the dry years of the 1990s and the ravages of climate change and severe bushfires this century.
The duck shooting season proposed for 2021 should be abandoned and that should become permanent in line with the wishes of most Victorians.
Tony Delaney, Warrnambool
Duck hunting supported
Sustainability is key for Victoria's tens of thousands of responsible, legitimate hunters.
Whether it's maintaining wetlands or complying with strict rules and regulations to ensure future sustainability of game species, Victorian hunters willingly do what's needed to ensure a healthy environment and the future of their favourite past time.
This includes years of work by Field and Game members to revitalise and manage more than 3000 acres of wetland at Gippsland's Heart Morass for all to enjoy. Hunting also generates $356 million for our state, supports thousands of jobs and brings families out to regional Victoria for a weekend away.
But this is not a convenient reality for those groups who would rather see hunting banned entirely. The Liberal Nationals strongly support Victoria's thousands of law-abiding, legitimate hunters.
In contrast, the Andrews Labor Government has slowly but surely chipped away at the rights of Victorian hunters since it was elected. The Victorian Government will soon make a determination on the 2021 duck season. After bushfires and the coronavirus pandemic, but now with a wet winter and spring the Liberal Nationals are calling for a full 2021 season. This will not only provide confidence for hunters, but also deliver a healthy boost in spending that's so desperately needed in our regional economies.
Peter Walsh MP, Leader of The Nationals
Victoria's courts are burdened with huge backlogs due to the Victorian Government's management of the Covid-19 scenario.
The County Court alone has a backlog of 1000 jury trials to be heard, with about 400 of these in regional Victoria. People facing more serious charges could have a two year wait. Months could go by just to see a Magistrate.
All this is bad enough for the alleged perpetrator waiting to prove their innocence or otherwise.
But it is the victims of crime who suffer the greatest violation - in the crime itself - and then in the wait for justice and resolution.
It is an angst-filled period for victims. It adds to the destabilisation of their lives, delaying any sense of safety, justice or the opportunity to restore life as they knew it before the crime against them was committed.
The court delays also impede the measures that are used to help the accused get their lives back on track. Anger management and drug rehabilitation are key to helping offenders - restoring their ability to be their best. In this way they become valued contributors to society, not detractors.
Justice delayed is justice denied - any way you look at it.
Regional Victoria has suffered enough because of the mismanagement of the virus by the Victorian Government.
The draconian restrictions of last year in particular are still revealing themselves through business shutdowns, tourism losses, even student learning outcomes to name a few.
This is a government whose first decision upon coming to power in November 2014 was to tear up a $1 billion contract to build the vital East-West Link in Melbourne.
This road will still need to be built.
But what it shows is that Daniel Andrews is prepared to spend or waste money where and when he wants to, almost at a whim, and most certainly for political gain.
The justice system in Victoria is not a whim - people's lives are not for playing with.
Premier Andrews needs to focus now on the immediate needs of the courts system and the lives impacted through the delays his decision making has caused.
Justice for the Justice system is vital.
Bev McArthur, Western Victoria MP
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