April 22, 2015

FORMER LANDS DEPARTMENT EMPLOYEES INVITED TO MAKE SUBMISSIONS TO INDEPENDENT INQUIRY INTO CHEMICAL USE

Written submissions and interviews are being sought for the Former Lands Department Chemical Inquiry, into the use of chemicals 24D and 245T.

Employees who worked for the former Lands Department between 1965 and 1995 in any of the following shires are encouraged to participate in the inquiry, through either an interview or a written submission:

  • Golden Plains Shire
  • Moorabool Shire
  • Hepburn Shire
  • Ballarat City Council
  • Pyrenees Shire
  • Ararat City Council, or
  • Central Goldfields Shire.

Only those who fulfil the regional criteria will be interviewed, however any interested parties can make a written submission to the Inquiry.

Interviews will commence in early May and will be conducted by experienced, independent investigators, in locations that are convenient to participants.

To register for an interview, contact the hotline on 1800 987 767 or email register@chemicalinquiry.vic.gov.au.

Written or electronic submissions should be sent to either:

Former Lands Department Chemical Inquiry, GPO Box 1925 Melbourne VIC 3001

register@chemicalinquiry.vic.gov.au

Submissions close on 12 June 2015.

Quotes attributable to Labor Member for Buninyong, Geoff Howard:

“Last year, former Lands Department employees raised concerns regarding workplace use and practices surrounding chemicals 25T and 24D, and possible health impacts from their exposure.”

“It is important that any affected workers be heard and that’s why we have commissioned a rigorous and independent inquiry to shine a light once and for all, on what took place.”   

Quotes attributable to Labor Member for Wendouree, Sharon Knight:

“I would urge all former Lands Department employees, who worked in the Ballarat region between 1965 and 1995, and their families, to contribute to the inquiry.  Every piece of information that can be gathered and analysed will be valuable.”

“This is an important opportunity for local people to have their knowledge and work history documented, so that their experience can add to what is known about past practices.”