Residents unite to protest cuts

ANGRY residents gathered on the steps of Ballarat Town Hall on Thursday to protest funding cuts to the ABC and SBS.

About 40 protesters dressed in “I love ABC” T-shirts and carrying placards that said “No cuts to ABC and SBS” attended the public rally, which was one of six held in the country.

The protests come in the wake of Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s announcement on Wednesday that ABC funding would be cut by $254 million over five years.

SBS’s budget would also be reduced by $25 million.

Ballarat resident Greer Vincent, 69, said she believed the ABC was vital to Australia’s democracy as it was the only news program that treated people as “intelligent human beings”.

“We need an alternative to the commercial media that is controlled mainly by Rupert Murdoch,” she said.

Protesters chanted the Playschool theme song and signed a large banner with messages of support for the national broadcasters.

 

This article originally appeared on page 2 of The Courier newspaper on 21 November 2014.

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