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Friday analysis: the face of the timber industry at today’s Gippsland protest

The battle for the timber industry in East Gippsland today hit the road, hopefully tugging at the Labor Government’s heartstrings.

Indiana Lockett’s letter to Labor MP Harriet Shing. Pictures: Weekly Times.

This morning timber workers rallied in Warragul and Rosedale before driving their trucks down the Princes Freeway to Morwell, in what organisers described as a funeral procession to mark the death of timber towns.

Timber family children planned to deliver a letter to Labor MP Harriet Shing’s Morwell office asking why she is not supporting them and their parents’ jobs.

The letter, written by grade-four Heyfield Primary School student Indiana Lockett, 10, on behalf of “all the timber kids” says “our parents work in the forests and they are very worried that they won’t have any more jobs.

“We are scared we will have to move away from our house and our friends at school.”

Aside from the loss of jobs in the region that will be caused by the State Government’s decision to shut down the native timber industry by 2030 – and job losses within the industry and region-wide will be huge – there has been very little talk of the mental cost.

Indiana has, in her own innocent way, opened that can of worms just a little bit.

In theory it would take a brave local MP to ignore it; it would take a dumb State Government to not act on it.

For those who saw Peta Credlin’s program on The Cult of Daniel Andrews on Sky News this week, sadly the answer seems clear.

While Ms Shing might shed a tear, don’t bank on Mr Andrews even taking the slightest bit of notice.

The letter has made it onto the Herald-Sun’s web site, and might even attract some attention from Melbourne’s news broadcasts both on radio and television.

The letter or course doesn’t tell the whole story, but it tells a story metropolitan voters might just take notice of.