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Proformat News
No: 48a
February 2010
Special issue
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Update on NAA Adelaide office closure
On Friday 29 January, Graham Jaunay was interviewed by Mike Sexton for a segment on the closure by the ABC's 7:30 Report program. When this program will be aired is not yet known.

In the meantime we have received the most responses ever to a newsletter article. The messages we are receiving tell us that the closure decision is not widely known, that readers are concerned and want to know what they can do about the matter.

Clearly from the responses received at the Community Cabinet in Adelaide on 20 Jan, the political leaders think the closure of the NAA Adelaide Office is a done deal. In spite of the Prime Minister's stance in the 2001 campaign when he was an Opposition backbencher, he has voiced no concerns this time. In fact his office supports the closure.

The time has come to look to your local Federal MP. With an election in the wind before the proposed closure in 2011, that person may be keen to retain their seat!

There are several ways to interact with your local member—some more effective than others.
     • Write a personal letter outlining your concerns.
     • Organise a deputation to air your concerns.
     • Prepare your own petition at the local level. Use this template.

On the national level, the politicians can comfortably ignore petitions with less than 100,000 names (the petition circulated widely on this matter attracted less than 7000 signatures) but can the local member afford to ignore a couple of hundred? What was their winning margin last election? If you live in a marginal seat make your target a petition that exceeds the winning margin at the last election!

A number of groups have been very quiet on the issue:
     1. We have not heard one word from a South Australian Senator.
     2. The state politicians have been quiet too—it’s a state issue.
     3. No campaigns of note by SA-based family or local history
           societies have been brought to Adelaide Proformat's notice
           with the exception of the Clan MacLeod Society who
           gathered up 470 signatures for the petition.

It would seem that a number of people and organisations are still unaware of the closure. Speak to the person at your local library responsible for the family and local history collection. Try and get them involved in some of the above actions. Make sure that the membership of your local family history group is aware too and encourage them to take action.

Speak to your local/regional newspaper, radio and television station about a news item. Write a letter to the editor of a newspaper.

Feel free to use the material previously published in Proformat News 48 to assist your efforts in the campaign.




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