Griffith staff rally against cuts to National Parks

Protesters rallied around the state to protest the proposed cuts to staff in National Parks made by the state government. Photo: JESSICA COATES
Protesters rallied around the state to protest the proposed cuts to staff in National Parks made by the state government. Photo: JESSICA COATES

Griffith staff at the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service have rallied against $120 million cuts by the state government.

Michelle McIntosh from the Public Service Association for the Public Service Association says the NSW State Government had implemented a huge restructure that both puts jobs and public safety at risk. 

“The flow on effect is the loss of rangers, pest management and a raft of admin positions. It’s trickling right down through the department,” she said. 

“Ultimately what will be at stake is the management of the national parks.”

Staff say jobs on the line include pest control, spacial data and fire management officers. 

Ms McIntyre said managers will be forced to oversee larger areas and staff. 

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“The management of pest control, weed control, fire suppression in possibly a remote area. That person might be 4-500 kms away.” 

The Riverina is host to a range of national parks including Cocoparra National Park near Yenda, Murrumbidgee Valley National Park near Narrandera, Yanga National Park near Balranald and Oolambeyan National Park. 

“It’s the government cutting these in the budget not thinking that can’t look after itself. It can’t manage itself. It needs people to be looking at it, surveying it and making sure the management of it is sufficient.”

The Griffith protest was just one of many, with rallies being held in locations around the state.