Dean Jeffreys being removed by police at the protest against 5G technology in Mullumbimby.
Dean Jeffreys being removed by police at the protest against 5G technology in Mullumbimby.

5G PROTEST: ‘Shocked, appalled…they would force rollout’

UPDATE 12.55pm: BYRON Shire councillor Sarah Ndiaye said the community had the right to protest and felt objections were not properly taken into account nor adequately addressed by Telstra. 

"Many in our community feel very strongly that they do not want or need the upgrade to 5G and that it presents a risk to their ongoing health and wellbeing.   

"Council recently resolved on a moratorium until such time that certain issues were addressed and Telstra are well aware of this.  

"Our community objected strongly to the upgrades to the tower during the community consultation period but it appears that Telstra have not adhered to the relevant guidelines in a number of areas.   

"For example, the single public notice published in the Byron Shire News did not mention the upgrades were to enable 5G technology, the petition, despite being presented to council and sent to the specified address, were sent back unopened and ignored. (This petition is now available in the minutes of of the March meeting of council). Official complaints have been lodged but ACMA need time to respond.   

"To ignore the strong sentiment of the community, then proceed with instillation at a time when people protesting would breach public health guidelines, does not engender much good faith and places our community, police and health services at unnecessary risk.   

Cr Ndiaye said she had approached Richmond MP Justine Elliot to as the council cannot issue a stop work notice to Telstra.    "Previously council tried to convene a meeting with ARPANSA, the relevant Telco representatives, scientists and concerned community members so we could try and address the issues but the ARPANSA and Telstra refused.    "Council has still not received comprehensive responses to the information requested via council resolution. Some responses were given but they require further investigation."     

UPDATE 12.20pm: PROTESTERS in Mullumbimby have been urged to consider social distancing regulations by Richmond MP Justine Elliott.

"I'm aware of the protests and public gatherings that have occurred and are being planned regarding the Telstra upgrade of the existing base station in Mullumbimby," Ms Elliott said.

"I strongly advise locals that any public gatherings or protests at this stage contravenes laws relating to social distancing during the Coronavirus crisis.

"Disregarding of social distancing directives endangers the health and safety of the wider community, Telstra staff and the police.

"In terms of the upgrade, Telstra has advised me that work to upgrade the existing base station in Mullumbimby to 5G technology is pursuant to the Telecommunications (Low-impact Facilities) Determination 2018 and is therefore exempt from local and state Government approval.

"Telstra has advised me that they have met their obligations to progress the build at this site in line with the Deployment Code. The upgrade is legal and will go ahead," Ms Elliot said.

 

Original story: OPPONENTS to an upgrade of the mobile network in Mullumbimby to 5G have vowed to continue their protest at the Dalley St site.

One of those opposing the new technology, Dean Jefferys, said rolling 24 hour protests will happen at the proposed 5G tower behind the Mullumbimby PO from 8am today.

He said 200 people attended the impromptu protest at the site yesterday where he was arrested for trying to stop a truck that was intending to remove a car blocking 5G installing equipment.

"I am shocked and appalled that the government aided by the police would force this 5G roll out during the coronavirus lockdown period hoping that there would be no protest.

"This is clearly against the community's desires as expressed recently when thousands of residents turned up at Mullumbimby council chambers and public meetings.

"People will be turning up to protest every day until this is stopped and the real health concerns of the local residents are satisfied."


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