Ms Nobody: George Bender’s death must not be in vain

Jodi Meynell, of Brisbane, is the woman who started the petition.
Jodi Meynell, of Brisbane, is the woman who started the petition.

UPDATE: A woman behind a viral petition on coal seam gas has gone public on why she started it.

Jodi Meynell - a self-described "nobody", said she was so affected by the Chinchilla cotton farmer's death that she started the online petition.

It has attracted more than 75,000 signatures and calls for Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk to change the law that allows CSG companies onto farmers' lands.

Mr Bender had a much-documented disagreement with coal seam gas companies and reportedly took his own life.

Late Hopeland farmer George Bender.
Late Hopeland farmer George Bender. Emma Heron

Ms Meynell said she didn't belong to any activist groups, but saw the injustice of the CSG industry's "bullying" and wanted to do something about it.

"It's just wrong that someone can be bullied to death for trying to protect his farm and his livelihood so I decided to start the petition," she said.

"I was totally blown away by the immediate reaction but at the same time I'm not that surprised because nobody would want another farmer to take his life under such extreme distress.

"Farmers and other people should have the right to say no to mining companies coming in and taking over."

EARLIER: A mysterious real estate agent is the driving force behind a petition that was started after the death of the late George Bender.

The Chinchilla farmer was a long-time opponent of coal seam gas and there are claims he was harassed by companies that wanted access to his land.

A Brisbane real estate agent, being called "Ms Nobody", started an online petition directed at the Queensland Premier.

The Change.org petition claims Mr Bender was "bullied to death".

"... after 10 years of being coerced, intimidated and overwhelmed by coal seam gas mining companies - after already having his water contaminated and depleted.  CSG companies literally broke his spirit," it reads.

"Knowing close friends of the family, and as an Australian citizen - the treatment of him by these companies is an outrage to me. He was a well-respected man in the community.

"He leaves behind a wife, kids and large family who loved him.

"In the heartbreaking words of my friend, 'We will never forget you Uncle George'... The fight will not end here." 

More than 75,000 people have now signed the petition and the number is growing.

Jodi Meynell is named as the woman behind the petition and activist group Lock the Gate Alliance is facilitating a meeting where she will explain why she started the petition and talk about the reaction to it. 

She will reveal all outside the Executive Building, 100 George St this morning at 11am.

If you or a member of your family are needing support, or information about suicide prevention, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.

Helen Bender asks a question on Q & A during its broadcast in Toowoomba. Photo Contributed
Helen Bender asks a question on Q & A during its broadcast in Toowoomba. Photo Contributed Contributed

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