Not since the Tasmanian ‘forest wars’ have timber workers and their communities felt more besieged by malicious and carefully co-ordinated attacks on forestry and their jobs. Source: Justin Law
Corporate activist organisations have ramped up their efforts to close down the industry in Western Australia, NSW, Victoria and Tasmania, which comes on the back of rural communities already hit by drought, bushfir
e and short-sighted government policy.
Piling on are the minnow groups, who peddle outrage like hemp shirts at a community market, as they fund vexatious litigation against forestry operations.
- In WA, protesters are damaging machinery in Nannup as they falsely claim “old-growth” forest is being harvested.
- The NSW EPA is continually looking over the shoulder of workers as it proactively responds to activists claims in northern and southern NSW amidst a ferocious anti-forestry campaign.
- Several professional protest organisations are banding together to attack forestry operations in the Styx Valley in Tasmania.
- And the ongoing legal battles in Victoria, as every crowd-funded, perpetually outraged, not-in-my-backyard group snaps at the heels of forestry.
Stuck in the middle of it all are hardworking men and women, who just want to get on with their jobs and produce the legally sourced timber products that the very people who are demonising them use every day.
It is their voice which should be heard alongside the timber industry-funded organisations who are doing a great job of arguing the case for forestry publicly and at the highest levels of government.
Forest & Wood Communities Australia is a new association which represents those grassroots workers and their communities, the small businesses that support the industry, and those who want to continue to enjoy Australian-sourced native and plantation timber.
FWCA complements the existing representative organisations to create an even stronger representation of those directly affected by anti-forestry politics. Unlike other organisations that largely represent the business or sector interests of the industry, FWCA represents the voice of the workers, their families, lovers of timber, forest users and the communities they live in.
Our mission is to build an association that will:
- Tackle corporate activism head on;
- Stand up for you against disastrous government policy; and
- Give you the tools to join us in the fight to save our industry.
We have the support of professional foresters, timber industry organisations and impartial academics who ensure that we have the best current forestry science and expertise on our side. They are helping us to fight back against the tide of overwhelming anti-forestry bias that has played out in the media, in government, in academia and in the legal system.
Our battlefront is in the public arena and we will be a proactive and loud voice in the media and in Parliament. We will use social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook to highlight the issues which affect us and inform you of the action we take.
We have already been successful in drawing the attention of the media to issues around some of the science which is used to attack the industry and we will continue to make sure there is at least balance in forestry issue reporting.
To ensure we are successful, we need to grow our membership and ask all supporters of the Australian plantation and native timber industry to join with us. We have kept our joining fee minimal to make FWCA available to everyone who for too long has not had the voice to fight back against the unfair, uninformed and hypocritical attacks on those who provide world-class timber products.