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Letter to the Editor: Yarra River needs real consultation

Everyone in the Yarra Valley understands the significance and importance of the Yarra River to our local region and to the city of Melbourne.

The river is the lifeblood of the Yarra Valley, servicing our industry and providing the beautiful environment we live in and share.

That’s why it is important for locals to have their say about the future of the river – how it is managed and protected.

The Victorian Government has appointed a Yarra River Protection Ministerial Advisory Committee to generate discussion and promote debate about the river’s future.

This Committee has now completed a series of community workshops and listening posts, inviting community feedback on its discussion paper.

Unfortunately this process has been rushed through so the government can have its agenda implemented, leaving the community with no time to have their say. Locals have not been given enough time to prepare submissions, with the closing date for written submissions being before the last listening post session.

Locals in the Yarra Valley are bitterly disappointed the government is making little attempt to hear their views. It is therefore understandable that locals have no confidence in this process, feeling shut out and undervalued.

Therefore, I urge the Andrews Labor Government to commit to real consultation by engaging further with the Yarra Valley community to ensure our river can be better looked after into the future.

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