[Broadcast on Paradigm Shift (4ZZZ fm 102.1) at noon on Friday, 27 Feb 2015. A special thnx to Nicole (announcer) and Nathan (panelling) for doing the show. The script was written by Andy and Ian. Andy did the interview with long term resident of Miller’s Point in Sydney.]
Sydney has a long history of evictions and resistance to them. During the Great Depression, tenants unions would blockade houses to prevent banks evicting families. In the 1970’s, as Barney Gardner briefly mentions in the interview below, the Builders Labourers Federation launched a series of “green bans”, refusing to work on jobsites that were evicting working class people and demolishing historic buildings. These bans, working alongside the communities affected, helped to preserve low income housing in Woolloomooloo and Glebe, and kept historic buildings in The Rocks and Kings Cross.
Millers Point is a tiny enclave of houses near Darling Harbour that has managed to survive through all this, though it has changed hands from Maritime housing to department of housing.
With Sydney inner city housing prices through the roof, the department of housing is now trying to sell off this last vestige of low income housing and move everyone to other suburbs.
Just a few km south of Millers Point, there is another very similar housing struggle going on in Redfern, where the aboriginal housing that was fought so hard for in the 1970’s is set to be sold off; again the lure of huge real estate money outweighing any notions of protecting community.
Let us hear Barney Gardner’s story, a man who has lived at Millers Point for 65 years.
Listen to PShift here … http://ondemand.4zzzfm.org.au/paradigm-shift/2015-02-27
Andy’s full interview with Barney is also on soundcloud:
Palace Music – The Brute Choir
Nana Vigilante – Impermanence
Thigh Master – Age of concern
Employment – Words I wish I’d never put to paper, now spill past my teeth