This is an extremely urgent call asking you to contact your
local MP, NSW Ministers and the Premier, urging that they maintain funding
levels for the Environmental Defenders Office (EDO) in Sydney, HSI’s most
important partner. The NSW Government is planning to strip all of the EDO’s
public funding because it is effective in defending public rights and the
environment against large developers favoured by the Government. We need every
HSI member to help with this on this critical issue.
Since HSI established its first office in Australia in 1994,
the environment lawyers at EDO have continued to provide us with the best legal
advice and help possible, at no cost! We have been provided with many hundreds
of thousands of dollars’ worth of free advice and free legal representation
over nearly 20 years. Campaign life without these skilled legal professionals
is simply unthinkable, with enormous ramifications for the protection of
wildlife and habitats all over Australia.
HSI has been involved with nearly 20 court cases over the
years, fighting to protect species and their habitats, and the EDO has been
involved in nearly all of them. The most memorable was the many years spent in
court trying stop the Japanese whaling fleet from killing minke whales in
Australia’s Whale Sanctuary in Antarctica – a very long running battle in which
the Federal Court Judge agreed to issue an injunction prohibiting the whaling
company from entering Australian waters.
That victory was designed and managed by EDO to perfection.
In part this was because EDO was able to enlist the help of Australia’s top
Barristers. In this case it was Stephen Gageler, who went on to become the
Solicitor General in Canberra (the Attorney General’s right-hand man) and has
just been appointed as a Judge to the High Court of Australia. Can you imagine
HSI being without this sort essential legal advice and access to the best legal
minds in the country – all trying to defend Australia’s beleaguered wild
animals and places?
But it’s not just about going to court - EDO helps HSI in
every aspect of our work - local, regional, national and international, and
many our victories have also been EDO victories, and we really cannot
countenance losing such a critical partner – and ultimately of course the
environment will suffer. Remember, that we are only one of hundreds of
individuals and groups that EDO has helped, so it is not hard to image the huge
gap that would be left in our environmental defences should EDO be destroyed by
a Government doing the biding of big industry and rapacious developers.
Please help us and EDO by taking the following action
We need HSI’s supporters to make it loud and clear to the
politicians by calling or e-mailing or both the following:
your local Member of Parliament to call for their support to save EDO NSW, and
to express your support. You can find contacts for your local MP at:
the Premier (firstname.lastname@example.org or ph: (02) 9487 8588), the Attorney
General the Hon. Greg Smith (email@example.com or ph: (02) 9228
5246) and the Minister for Planning & Infrastructure the Hon. Brad Hazzard
MP (firstname.lastname@example.org or ph: (02) 9228 5258)
• Speak to
your local media and look for chances to support us such as calling in to
talk back shows
• Share this
email with anyone you think might care be concerned for the loss of this
critical public legal facility.
Many, many thanks for all your help. There is no doubt that
Australia’s wildlife and wild places will suffer as a direct consequence if the
EDO is not given the full financial support it (and the public) fully deserves.
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