April 25, 2015 Bulletin
Protest Ride Bulletin 25-Apr-2015
Its been a busy week for me and I felt the time was right to bring you up to date what’s been happening.
Sargeant Standish from Boroondara Police made contact with me after I emailed them to inform them of the protest ride.Sargeant Standish (who is a really decent man) spent considerable time explaining to me the measures that police had so far undertaken to try and capture the perpetrator. I think he was feeling a little defensive about the fact that this whole sorry saga had dragged on for so long and that the protest would shine a spotlight on him and Inspector Frost (who is leading the investigation).I told him that the cycling community was angry and getting angrier but we recognized that he and Inspector Frost had been doing their best with the resources that had so far been made available to them. I added that the purpose of the protest ride was to elevate awareness of the issue and to demonstrate the degree of anger and frustration felt within the cycling community.
He didn’t relay any objection to me about the protest or try and talk me out of it and importantly, confirmed that we would have a police escort on the day.
- Last Tuesday morning I did a photo shoot with The Age down at the Boulevard. I am waiting to hear from one of their journalists who will interview me and then publish a story in their newspaper.
- This coming Tuesday, I have an interview with Channel 9. They are preparing a more comprehensive news story with input from the police and other sources.
- Earlier today I was contacted by Richard Stubbs’ producer with a message saying that Richard wanted to interview me on ABC Radio. No date and time has been set yet.
- I have had contact with Matthew Keenan of SBS. He is eager for SBS to pick up on the protest, particularly because he and other commentators at SBS were discussing tacks on the Boulevard at last year’s Tour de France!
- I have been interviewed by Matt de Neef from Cycling Tips magazine and expect an article to appear on their website during the coming week.
The Bicycle Advocacy Network (you know who they are)
This has been without doubt my biggest disappointment so far.I wont name names here but what I can say is that I have spoken to almost all the significant players within the network; and I’m not just talking about having a conversation with the receptionist, in most cases I’ve spoken to the CEO of the organization.What I have found is that by and large, these organizations dislike each other and do not co-operate with each other wherever possible.
Moreover, despite the fact that they are supposedly representing the interests of cyclists, none of them (yet) has had the courage to publicly support the protest. Quite literally, what they are saying to me is “we love what you are doing, we just can’t say so”.
Their fear is that they will be marginalized by the police and other government entities upon which they rely. So, we here are left to fend for ourselves for now.
While this is incredibly disappointing, I am still hoping to change the minds of some of them by explaining to them that they will look ridiculous when the mainstream media knocks on their door asking them why they aren’t supporting their own constituency on what is ostensibly a safety issue.
Rest assured, when the dust settles, I will have something to say about the advocacy groups that don’t end up supporting us, and it wont be pretty.
Sunday’s Protest Ride
What can you do to help?
The single most important thing you can do is to attend the protest ride on May 3rd. The more cyclists we have on the starting line the more seriously we will be taken; and the more likely it is that someone within the network of government agencies involved will find the funds to erect surveillance cameras.The next most important thing you can do is to BRING ALL YOUR FRIENDS! The more the merrier. Reach out to your network via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Strava, email and carrier pigeon and bring along anyone and everyone that can ride a bike.There is also a petition going. If you haven’t yet signed it, you can find it here.
Bye for now.