Stand united in Green Shirt
A bright shade of green is spreading across WA’s rural areas and it isn’t an influx of John Deere machinery.
It’s those who have joined the WA Green Shirt Movement.
Australians, and by default, WA farmers, have always been relatively low key about their industry and the politics surrounding it, but times are changing.
Now, it seems, everyone feels they have the right to an opinion on how the agricultural industry is run and they aren’t shy about letting farmers know.
Across all ag sectors, there is a range of industry bodies and, unfortunately, many of these groups seem unable, or unwilling, to work together for the common good of agriculture, its associated industries and those who work in it.
Queensland farmers were the first to turn “green”, when they donned green shirts to protest against their Government’s vegetation laws. To them, wearing green shirts symbolised who were the true environmentalists (greenies) caring for the land.
The movement quickly spread to WA, when frustration led to action, after a large meeting in the Great Southern, held in response to the Federal Government’s cancellation of the licence of Emanuel Exports.
Those in attendance at the meeting felt they were being ignored and their concerns dismissed.
Alan Satler, a Beverley farmer, decided it was time WA joined the Green Shirt Movement. A man of action, Alan soon had a WA Green Shirts Facebook page up and running, along with a Twitter account. Shirts were ordered and worn at a range of places including Parliament House, the Royal Show and the Pastoralists and Graziers conference.
It’s time every one of us involved in agriculture of any kind, and associated industries, stands side by side as one. When we aren’t united, then it is easy for wedges to be driven between us. We need to show everyone that Australia has an incredibly valuable agricultural sector and those involved in it are using world’s best practices, while also teaching others. We need to stand tall and proud.
The education cuts announced in December 2017 showed just what a community, and a State, can do when people are united by a cause or belief, irrespective of their political leanings. When we stand united, believe in ourselves and our industries, we are a force to be reckoned with.
So get your “green shirt” and wear it proudly, wherever you go.
Liam Johns of Killara Station in Meekatharra, with daughters Mia and Ali, wear their green shirts with pride.