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Petition demands George Bender’s death not be in vain; Must be heeded by COAG

The death of Chinchilla farmer, George Bender, last month touched the hearts of thousands around Australia and overseas.

Jodi Meynell - a self-described “nobody” - was so affected by George’s death by suicide following 10 years of harassment by the coal seam gas (CSG) industry that she started her own online petition directed to Queensland Premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk.

In the first two days, more than 50,000 ordinary people signed the petition asking that George’s death not be in vain and that the Premier stop CSG companies from bullying farmers.


The number of signatories has swelled to more than 75,000 and is still growing since the petition went up on October 21. More than 16,000 people have also left angry and sad comments on the site.

Ms Meynell, a Brisbane real estate agent, belongs to no activist groups but simply saw the injustice of the CSG industry’s bullying and wanted to do something about it.

“It’s just wrong that someone can be bullied to death for trying to protect his farm and his livelihood so I decided to start the petition,” she said.

“I was totally blown away by the immediate reaction but at the same time I’m not that surprised because nobody would want another farmer to take his life under such extreme distress.

“Farmers and other people should have the right to say no to mining companies coming in and taking over.

Lock the Gate’s President, Drew Hutton, believes that the Qld Government should consider the petition as it prepares to meet with all Australian governments next Friday, December 4, at the Council of Australia Governments (COAG), to address the issue of forced access by mining companies to Australia farms. 

Mr Hutton said the reaction to the petition proved the Qld Government needed to go to COAG next week with a proposal to give landholders and Traditional Owners the legal right to say no to mining.

“Queenslanders are sick of our government letting multi-national mining companies ride roughshod over our communities. The State Government needs to find some backbone and take action to protect people in the firing line of the mining industry,” he said.

“The Queensland Government must give landholders the legal right to say ‘no’ to mining and it must go to COAG leading the way on a new path forward so that the bullying and coercion of Australian landholders stops immediately.”

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  • Nicki Cameron
    commented 2015-11-27 00:01:03 +1100
    Come on Australia.. let’s all get on board with this and boot the multi nationals out. Good on you Drew Hutton, and Jodi meynell and everyone who is doing the best they can to keep going. Everyone should have the right to keep their homes, families and health safe from invasion. I believe the destruction caused by the mining industries is an act of terrorism on our country and on our people. Governments who were voted in by the people in good faith who are NOT supporting the health and livelihoods of ALL Australians are acting in an anti constitional manner and should NOT be allowed to continue to hold their position. When will the Australian government do what is right and give people back their rights to say NO? Listen to us!
  • Joe Taranto
    commented 2015-11-26 16:10:54 +1100
    Well done Drew Hutton you are a champion of the land owners who have been bullied by a Government that Amends the Law that protect the people`s rights to use and enjoy their land. Keep up the good work and demand zero tolerance for corrupt politicians.
  • Joe Taranto
    followed this page 2015-11-26 15:43:57 +1100