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Council supports new research into inclusive community planning

Gympie Regional Council is partnering with Queensland University of Technology in a research project that aims to build knowledge and understanding of inclusive community planning for people with disabilities in regional areas.

The research project commences this year and Queensland University of Technology is currently fielding expressions of interest for a local advisory group. 

The goals of the advisory group include; providing feedback on research tools at each phase of the project, providing input on ways to best engage locally, providing ideas on enhancing participant voices within the scope of the research project, facilitating relevant linkages within the network and the broader sector to support the promotion of the project, and promoting research events, initiatives and programs. 

To be eligible to participate in the advisory group, participants must identify as a person with a disability who is 16 years or older, or be a family member of a child with a disability 15 years or under that lives within the Gympie region.

Dr Lisa Stafford, from the School of Public Health and Social Work at Queensland University of Technology, said the local advisory group will help guide the project, including ideas and feedback on information and data gathering.

“The role of the advisory group is to ensure we hear the voices of diverse community members by outreaching to people through networks and connections at the local level.”

“Every community is unique, as such it is vital all community-based research projects are guided by the local people, particularly affected citizens.” 

“While all members of the community will be invited to participate in the research, the aim of the advisory group is to maximise the participation of people with disabilities,” she said. 

This project is funded by the Australian Research Council under DE190101512 - ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA).

Applications for the advisory group close 5.00pm Friday 31 January 2020.

For more information on how to join, visit www.inclusivecommunityplannning.com/local-research-advisory-groups

Mayor's Column - Wednesday, 12th February 2020 Mayor's Column - Wednesday, 12th February 2020

The old saying that ‘a week is a long time in politics’ was particularly true again at the federal level this week. Those issues aside, the Gympie region, like all others across the state, is gearing up for our local elections.  

These elections give the wider community the opportunity and democratic right to select the candidate that they wish to have a leadership role in the management of their community for the next four years.  

I would urge all residents to do their research on all candidates and get to know who they will be casting their vote for as the election date of 28 March fast approaches.  
I would also urge residents to heed another old saying; ‘actions speak louder than words’.  

Representing your constituents and the wider community as a duly elected councillor, in my opinion, is one of the greatest honours that could be bestowed upon an individual, however it is certainly not a popularity contest and nor should it be.  

Difficult decisions need to be made which will draw the ire of some while benefitting the majority.  You will be subjected to much more scrutiny and gossip than your family and friends will ever be.  
You will be required to adhere to stringent laws, policies and procedures which you may not have been required to previously.  But on the upside, you will represent your community and have a say and a role in delivering community services, projects and infrastructure for the benefit of the wider community and the region.  
Current councillors, over this term of council, should be proud of their contributions.  

I wish each and every resident who nominates to lead this community at the forth coming elections, all the very best. 

Mayor Mick Curran 

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