The Sunday Mail (Queensland)



OUR country cousins are doing it tough. The worst drought in living memory has turned much of western Queensland into a dust bowl. Farmers and townsfolk need our help like never before.

The Sunday Mail, in conjunctio­n with Suncorp, will host a bush forum on September 26 in Longreach to establish what is required to help the west get back on its feet.

We will bring together a panel of leading politician­s and rural industry representa­tives to discuss the major issues. We will announce who will be on the panel next Sunday.

We’re expecting a big crowd at the forum, to be held from 8.30am to 9.30am at Longreach State Primary School.

The 125th anniversar­y of the Longreach Cup race meeting is later that day, and the night before, Paul Kelly and Troy Cassar-Daley will host a concert.

And for the first time ever, The Sunday Mail will be edited from a rural town.

Regional communitie­s are fed up with talk and no action. This forum will be about how issues can be rectified.

Farmers such as Mark Hartley from Kulpi near Dalby need assistance.

“The lack of rain is obviously the biggest problem at the moment but sourcing feed is an issue as well, there’s never enough money to go around,” Mr Hartley (pictured) says.

“We had a bit of rain this week but then you don’t know how long you’ll have to wait for the next lot or maintain feed for. If we had some more consistent funding, we might have something which makes us drought-proof for the future.”

The main discussion points will be determined through the questions registered by participan­ts and identified by The Sunday Mail editorial group. The forum will be covered in our September 27 edition.

The Sunday Mail will provide accountabi­lity, going to the relevant decision-makers with the outcomes and asking them to act. Submit questions via our website at couriermai­ or via GPO Box 130, Brisbane, 4001, or email promotions @newsqueens­ with Sunday Mail Bush Forum in the subject line.

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