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Byron Shire
April 17, 2021

Don’t isolate men

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Rainer Glasker, Mount Burrell

I was pleased to learn that Lyn Dickinson is suggesting alternate sites for Pottsville Men’s Shed and highlighting the important issues for consideration in choosing a location.  I hope the committee will keep an open mind when considering the pros and cons of various options.

While I strongly favoured the southern end of the market site in Pottsville for its central location, I understand that there are difficulties with that site. The Barry Sheppard sports field in Hastings Point has also been suggested, and as the Men’s Shed will be servicing areas north of Pottsville, that site appears to offer clear advantages.

I am concerned at suggestions that Black Rocks sports field could be used temporarily. It is isolated and distant from the majority of those who might use the facility.

There are serious security issues due to poor visibility and past activity by vandals and hoons. It would be devastating for men to have equipment and part-completed projects stolen or trashed, and it is surely not in line with the group’s objectives to put men in a position of having to confront mischief-makers.

How will the shed be guarded outside the limited hours of operation (approx 12 hours per week), especially if the field is opened up for sporting activities? Looking at the surrounding bushland, I also have grave concerns about the potential fire risk if vandals access flammable commodities.

How can such a remote location be considered suitable for a group whose stated objective is to foster links to the community and address problems of social isolation?

Everything I read about the Men’s Shed objectives reinforces my view that locating it at Black Rocks sports field (albeit by erection of a removal shed for use for a few years) runs contrary to everything the Men’s Shed stands for.

 


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