Thanks Alex for one of the most rational and sensible …

Comment on Is the town over all the talk? by Bob Durnan.

Thanks Alex for one of the most rational and sensible contributions to the public debate about these issues that I’ve read in the past 35 years in Alice Springs. I also walk along the Todd on an almost daily basis in the morning or evening, between Mills St and the Taffy Pick Causeway or the Gap, often partly on the sand or on the tracks used by the police and Council workers. Most weekday evenings I also cross the river on foot after sunset between the end of Mills St and the Totem Theatre, walk past the Senior Citizens Centre, through Snow Kenna Park, past the Todd Tavern and down the Mall to Parsons St and check my mailbox at the post office. (Like Alex, I used to sometimes have problems with stray dogs, but I rarely have that problem these days. Also like Alex, I avoid using the Wills Terrace Crossing and its walkway on foot late at night, as I have heard stories about young hooligans attacking people on it a number of times over the years). After checking my post office box I often then visit one of the supermarkets and return home via the Uniting Church lawns and the Mall, crossing the river in the same area.
I have been walking and bicycling along the river, and crossing it at both day and night times, usually alone, for most of the last 15 years since we bought a place in Mills St. I have never once been assaulted or threatened, by anybody. Like Alex, I often engage in conversations with people I come across who drink, picnic, relax, camp in, argue, fight or otherwise frequent these places. I have more problems with tourists who don’t understand which side of a bicycle path you should use in Australia than I do with anybody else, although I do sometimes get irritated by locals who take up all the path by sitting on it when partying, and the broken glass on these paths can sometimes be a hazard. The presence of far too much litter is a continuing annoyance.
Last night I walked to and from the meeting in the Andy McNeil room and felt completely safe, although I wouldn’t go near the Bo’s / Rock Bar area late at night on foot, as when working late in an office in that area I have sometimes had apprehensions about the intent of aggressive and heavily intoxicated people in their vicinity. However I think that people like Renee G. (@Posted March 22, 2012 at 2:14 pm) and Dianne (@Posted March 22, 2012 at 3:20 pm) and many others who assume that all our public spaces are going to be unsafe at night should reconsider some of their assumptions. I understand that women often have more reason than men to be apprehensive, but I fail to see why anybody would be scared to attend a meeting in the Alice Springs Town Council buildings at 6.30pm on a Wednesday night under most circumstances.

Bob Durnan Also Commented

Is the town over all the talk?
Are we lost in some surreal episode of an Australian version of Mad Men? Have any of these candidates who want to abolish all the alcohol restrictions of the last few years realised that, if they succeeded, then the cheap wines would be on sale from early in the day at less than a quarter of their current prices? i.e. young people being introduced to grog, including young pregnant women, as well as binge drinkers and people who habitually drink at excessive levels, would all be able to purchase four times as much pure alcohol each pay week or fortnight, compared to what they have been able to buy in recent times. They would be able to buy as many as they can afford of the 5 litre casks full of the cheapest wines in the world. Alice Springs would be awash with a king tide of alcohol, dwarfing what we currently see. There would be much more drunkenness. We would have to put up with far more crime, violence, traffic accidents, foetal alcohol syndrome, vandalism, hospitalisation, imprisonment, chronic disease and bad behaviour than our town presently hosts.
Think about it, Steve, Eli, Dave, Samih and Geoff.
You too should think about it, voters.


Recent Comments by Bob Durnan

Elferink and Gooda clash over underage marriage
Peter, Posted June 30, 2017 at 2:30 pm: some young girls may resist promised marriage more strongly these days, but I doubt whether some are in a position to do so.
It has been authoritatively reported by youth workers in Alice Springs and Tennant Creek in the last few years that rape of young women is rife in these towns.


I’m not kungka, I’m arelhe
Does anybody know if the hours when the Arrernte words teaching program is held at the Apmere angkentye-kenhe are available somewhere on the net, or anywhere else?
I thought I had seen it advertised for every Wednesday night at 6pm, but this doesn’t appear to be the case?
I have gone there at this time, found it closed, and no notice or info on the door.
Anybody wanna clarify here?


Judge Borchers’ position should be assessed: CAALAS
Alex, of course one part-time worker with CAALAS is not able to, in your words, “work closely with EVERY SINGLE young person going throughout Central Australian court system, their family, community, lawyer, school and other service-providers to provide the young person with the support they need to get back on track and stay out of trouble”.
That is exactly my point, and why it is wrong for you to lay the blame on that worker, as you did when you wrote “if your PART-TIME advocacy programme co-ordinator did her job after this child’s court appearance in March, then he wouldn’t have appeared in court again in May.”
As I said earlier: That advocacy programme co-ordinator performed her job with great diligence and dedication, and cannot be held to blame for any alleged failure of duty of care, as the case load of such cases far exceeds the ability of one worker to cover even a small proportion of them. She was doing her job very well, covering as many of the cases as she could, but she wasn’t a magician. So your cheap jibe at her reputation is wrongly placed, and you should withdraw it.


Judge Borchers’ position should be assessed: CAALAS
Evelyne Roullet, Posted June 22, 2017 at 1:42 pm: Ralph was not talking about where or how the kid should be housed. He was referring to the bigger issue of the huge trauma in his life, caused by the alleged killing of his mother by his father. Kids who experience this level of trauma need intensive help and support, and we need to make sure that they get it, from wherever it may be best available.


Judge Borchers’ position should be assessed: CAALAS
Alex, on June 22, 2017 at 11:44 am you said, and I quote: “If your PART-TIME advocacy programme co-ordinator did her job after this child’s court appearance in March, then he wouldn’t have appeared in court again in May.”
So you cast an aspersion on her. It is entirely unwarranted.
Don’t wriggle out, apologise.


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