Saturday, March 15, 2008

Asbestos FAQs don't make the grade

The Office of Housing has a liking for 'posting' new information at obscure times, and the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on asbestos at its Roberts Street Northcote public housing estate are no exception.

They went up on the redevelopment website yesterday evening (Friday 14 March) and unfortunately offer an inadequate picture of asbestos safety measures during the imminent demolition of the derelict 47-unit estate. Bear in mind here that the works were to start on Tuesday 11 March without anything like even the poor response to questions offered by these FAQs.

Also note that the FAQs seemingly represent the Office of Housing's best response after many bites at the cherry, and after they were sent key questions about this issue back on 18 January – questions that were updated and again highlighted for them in letters sent to Northcote MP Fiona Richardson and housing minister Richard Wynne last Tuesday 11 March.

Well, I've safely archived their FAQs and here make available a comprehensive response [PDF] showing just where the gaps are – and they are many. The response has links to further information online, and tips on some simple things you can do to get a better result on this issue. It also contains contact details for Richardson and Wynne – as well, of course, for me. Questions and comments are welcome!

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Comments are most welcome on any of the posts at Northcote Independent. I encourage feedback - positive or negative. Feel free to disagree, but remember that posts are moderated to ensure they are on the topic and in the spirit of open debate, as outlined in my editorial policy.