‘Equal­ity’ at heart of cur­few

Couple will­ing to pur­chase land to en­sure path­way closed off

Mt Druitt - St Mary's Standard (East) - - NEWS - Elisha Pearce

A PE­TI­TION call­ing for a cur­few on flights at the Badgerys Creek air­port is about eq­uity, ac­cord­ing to Black­town Coun­cil.

Mayor Stephen Bali is cam­paign­ing for time re­stric­tions at the sec­ond Syd­ney air­port and has started a change.org pe­ti­tion.

“If one class of peo­ple (those liv­ing un­der Syd­ney and Ade­laide air­port flight paths) de­serve cur­few protection, then so do those liv­ing un­der the likely ef­fects of Badgerys Creek (air­port),” Cr Bali said.

“We all be­lieve in equal­ity and that’s all we are ask­ing for — that the same op­er­at­ing con­di­tions be ap­plied.

“The peo­ple of Western Syd­ney are not sec­ond-class cit­i­zens and they do not de­serve sec­ond-class treat­ment. It’s all about eq­uity and a fair go for the west.”

The Syd­ney Air­port Cur­few Act 1995 re­stricts air traf­fic at the Mas­cot hub be­tween 11pm and 6am.

The on­line pe­ti­tion is ad­dressed to the fed­eral In­fra­struc­ture and Trans­port Min­is­ter Dar­ren Ch­ester, Prime Min­is­ter Mal­colm Turn­bull and NSW Premier Mike Baird.

As of 12.15pm on Mon­day, the pe­ti­tion had amassed 250 sig­na­tures with a goal of 500.

“Noise from air­craft is a sig­nif­i­cant is­sue,” Cr Bali said.

“Whether some­one is for or against the air­port, surely we all agree those liv­ing un­der the pro­posed flight paths need the in­ter­na­tion­ally ac­cepted stan­dards of protection.” IN THE two decades they’ve lived in Plumpton, the Drew fam­ily has seen and heard it all in the laneway next to their house – and now they’ve had enough.

The lane be­tween Per­rin Ave and Hy­atts Rd, Plumpton, is used by peo­ple to drink, smoke, swear, fight and even set fences on fire.

Kim Drew, 51, said she had seen two gen­er­a­tions of peo­ple use the laneway for hid­ing bad be­hav­iour and vi­o­lence, and she found it very dis­turb­ing right next to her home.

“There is phys­i­cal viol- ence,” she said. “High school kids get stuck into each other and once my hus­band ac­tu­ally had to pro­tect a kid him­self.”

Ms Drew said their fence also had been set on fire.

A per­son walk­ing past the lane to pick her chil­dren up from nearby Plumpton High School saw it was on fire and ran to Ms Drew’s front door to alert her.

“I hap­pened to be sick in bed and it was re­ally lucky I was home that day,” Ms Drew said.

She said school­child­ren hung out in the laneway dur­ing the day, out of sight of the school, and other peo- ple came past at night and on the week­ends.

“They scream, mu­sic, swear and around,” she said.

“We’ve had graf­fiti down there plenty of times; we’d have to get crews to come through and clean it up.

“And just the amount of rub­bish ... we’ll call coun­cil to come and clean the laneway when it’s too bad.”

Other times, the fam­ily has seen sy­ringes they as­sume have been used for tak­ing drugs.

Ms Drew’s hus­band Kevin, 52, said the neigh­bour on the other side was go­ing to sell to get away play run from the lane – their fence had been set on fire too.

Now Ms Drew said they also were con­sid­er­ing mov­ing from the home they’ve lived in since they were young adults if the lane wasn’t closed.

“It’s just got­ten to the point now where it’s enough,” she said.

“We are ac­tu­ally think­ing of mov­ing out af­ter 20-odd years – we bought the house brand new 25 years ago.”

The Drews had asked for the lane to closed when a coun­cil let­ter was sent around, ask­ing neigh­bours their opin­ion of it. But Ms Drew said noth­ing came of it and now they would con­sider more dras­tic op­tions.

“I’d be will­ing to pur­chase the land so peo­ple can’t get through there,” she said.

“I’d fence it if we bought it. When we started see­ing (coun­cil) close off all the other lanes, we thought ‘Great, it’s go­ing to hap­pen for ours’ but it hasn’t hap­pened. There hasn’t been any luck for us.”

Black­town Coun­cil hasn’t yet re­sponded to ques­tions.

Kim and Kevin Drew want the laneway next to their Plumpton house closed and (in­set) their fence was set on fire re­cently. Pic­ture: Justin San­son

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