Bendigo Advertiser letters to the editor

SAFETY CONCERN: Letter-writer Kevin de Vries says poor road infrastructure is placing cyclists and pedestrians at risk. Picture: FILE PHOTO
SAFETY CONCERN: Letter-writer Kevin de Vries says poor road infrastructure is placing cyclists and pedestrians at risk. Picture: FILE PHOTO

Road safety important for all city’s residents

The identification of safety risks experienced by cyclists when sharing narrow roads in Bendigo is welcome and timely (“Plea to improve roads”, Bendigo Advertiser, June 14).

As our city grows, it is important that road safety is prioritised for all road users, including cyclists and pedestrians.

Cyclist safety on linking roads such as Howard Street is just as important as on arterial roads.

Another such road is Junortoun Road in Junortoun.

Like Howard Street it serves an important linking function, connecting the communities of Junortoun and Strathfieldsaye.

Junortoun Road is narrow, with no sealed shoulder, no footpath or cycling path, and with deep unformed gutters that are difficult to cross by foot. It has blind crests and blind intersections, and it carries an increasing volume of fast moving (80km/h) traffic.

Cyclists using Junortoun Road are vulnerable, and residents along this route are car-dependent, due to lack of infrastructure.

Safety concerns for cyclists and pedestrians on Junortoun Road mean that Junortoun residents do not have a safe cycling and walking route to their nearest schools, shops and services in Strathfieldsaye.

The Junortoun Community Action Group calls for the City of Greater Bendigo to plan and prioritise safety improvements along Junortoun Road, to ensure that local residents can safely use this road, as well as through traffic.

Kevin de Vries, Junortoun Community Action Group secretary

Not what doctor ordered

A new medical school is not the answer to addressing current rural doctor shortages.

Says who? Rural students.

There is currently an excess of medical graduates with inadequate rural training opportunities post-graduation.

Thus, the next step in addressing the rural doctor shortage is not to produce more graduates, but rather to attract and retain current graduates.

One area in which we can do this is through increased speciality training opportunities in regional centres.

I can assure you that medical students interested in pursuing careers in rural health are not a rarity.

I am currently completing my medical studies in Wagga, where I’ve met many medical students whom have expressed interest in pursuing long-term training in the area.

This, however, is not currently a feasible option for the majority of us.

Whilst we are fortunate to already have the opportunity to complete our medical studies and internship in communities like Wagga, Bendigo and Orange, we are often forced to return to the city to pursue specialty training or if we do want to remain rural, are restricted in our speciality options.

By implementing rural speciality training pathways, rural communities obtain both short and long-term gain.

The program would translate to an immediate increase in medical resources and doctors working in the area, and long-term retention of doctors.

No matter how many medical graduates we continue to churn out, the maldistribution of doctors will not change until we provide adequate long-term training and working opportunities in regional and rural Australia.

Jenna Mewburn, Australian Medical Students Association Rural Health Committee co-chair

Labor’s border plan failure

Even in opposition the Labor Party cost the Australian public money.

These refugees should never have been allowed here in the first place.

Due to their complete and utter failure on border protection, we now have to give away $70 million, plus $20 million in costs.

All the pain and suffering these people have suffered should be place squarely on the very thin shoulders of the Labor Party.

Peter Lesuey, Kennington