Ordinary Council Meeting
7 May 2019
RECORD NUMBER: 2019/880
I, CR Stephen Nugent and cr joanne mcrae wish to move the following Notice of Motion at the Council Meeting of 7 May 2019:
That Council notes that:
1 We live in a world where people have no option but to flee their homes and countries, and that globally resettlement options for these people are rare and over-subscribed.
2 All countries, especially the wealthiest like Australia, need to do their fair share by welcoming refugees in any way they can.
3 Refugees and migrants have made and continue to make a positive contribution to Australia, our economy and our communities.
4 We thus need to urgently create more opportunities for safe and effective resettlement of refugees and people seeking asylum in our communities, including in regional areas.
5 As recommended by the Refugee Council of Australia, the first non-legally binding step is for our Council to declare our Local Government Area a Refugee Welcome Zone.
And consequently, resolves that:
1 Orange City Council is a community which welcomes refugees.
2 Orange City Council signs the declaration to become a Refugee Welcome Zone, joining over 148 Local Government Areas nationwide.
The Mums 4 Refugees Orange Working Group wrote to Council in October last year proposing that Orange become a Welcome Refugee Zone. Mums 4 Refugees is a “grassroots organisation with a national membership of over 3000 women, and a social media reach of over 300,000 people. With over 75 members, the Orange chapter is the first Mums 4 Refugees group representing in-land, regional and rural Australian mothers and grandmothers.”
A Refugee Welcome Zone is a “Local Government Area which has made a commitment in spirit to welcoming refugees into the community, upholding the human rights of refugees, demonstrating compassion for refugees and enhancing cultural and religious diversity in the community.
The Refugee Welcome Zone initiative began in June 2002 as part of Refugee Week celebrations. Today, with more than 140 Local Government Areas joining as Refugee Welcome Zones, the initiative has proven to be a great success in connecting local governments with people seeking asylum and from refugee backgrounds, and the community organisations that support them.”
Among the current list of Refugee Welcome Zones there are a number in the Central West and surrounds:
· Bathurst Region
· City of the Blue Mountains
· City of Dubbo
· City of Lithgow
· Cowra Shire
· Parkes Shire
· Blayney Shire (within the past few months).
The Mums 4 Refugees Orange Working Group letter finishes by describing the benefits in Orange becoming a Welcome Refugee Zone.
“As you may already know, the population of people seeking asylum and from refugee backgrounds in our local area is relatively small. However, we have seen the enormous contributions and positive economic impact refugee communities have made in regional settings across Australia.
We thus strongly believe that becoming a Refugee Welcome Zone is not only a great way for Orange City Council to promote social cohesion and cultural diversity. It will also encourage the development of a more coordinated approach between Orange City Council and organisations such as ours to improve settlement outcomes for refugees, which is beneficial for the Orange City community at large.”
The Mums 4 Refugees Orange Working Group has already been working with Orange CultureHub, Orange Social Justice Group and the Migrant Support team at Council, to support a number of people considering Orange as a possible relocation option. Becoming a Welcome Refugee Zone will further strengthen and support this multi-organisational approach.
Signed Cr Stephen Nugent Cr Joanne McRae
RECORD NUMBER: 2019/907
I, CR Glenn Taylor, CR JEFF WHITTON and CR JASON HAMLING wish to move the following Notice of Motion at the Council Meeting of 7 May 2019:
That Council be provided a report at the meeting on 21 May 2019 for the installation of toilet facilities in Robertson Park.