Tell your State local member how much you value our national parks. Write hard copy letters and not just emails. Encourage your friends and relatives to do the same. Telephone the electoral office and ask what your local member is doing to support national parks in the electorate.
Ask the candidates in the 2019 State election questions, and support those who are serious about nature conservation and our parks and protected areas.
Support groups like the NSW National Parks Association and the Nature Conservation Council of NSW.
Who We Are
Park Watch was established in response to the ongoing purge of National Parks and Wildlife Service staff by the NSW government. Since 2009, over 30% of ranger positions have been abolished, despite annual visitation to national parks skyrocketing to 52 million. There are now more national parks than there are rangers to manage them. Park Watch aims to inform the NSW community of this outrageous attack on NPWS staff, and on our precious NSW national parks.
Why Be Concerned?
Our national parks and protected areas are the backbone of our natural heritage. We are very fortunate that large tracts of bush remain undeveloped and we can visit such places and come face to face with nature through active pursuits or simply by getting away from it all without the distractions of modern life.
National parks and protected areas are vital for our native plants and animals. These areas are actively managed on an ecosystem basis with work planned and carried out by dedicated staff, rangers and field officers guided with input by scientific specialists. But the number of these people is being slashed.
Who Is Left To Care For Our Precious Nature?
Since 2009, restructure after restructure has meant:
- 30% fewer rangers since 2009, a further 23 at least to go after the 2019 election.
- Field officer numbers slashed by 30% in the 2017 restructure.
- Experienced, knowledgeable people over 50 targeted for redundancy.
- Scientists, ecologists and specialist jobs gone.
- Pest control officers gone.
- Administration positions gone – primarily affecting women.
- Local offices closed – less contact with visitors by NPWS staff.
- The Berejiklian Coalition Government boasts 119 new positions, but the majority are low grade Field Officer General Operations (FOGOs) – not permitted to handle machinery (even chain saws) or work weekends.
- Moves to reclassify rangers as non-graduate positions – general ‘dumbing down’ of the organisation.
- $122 million gone from the NPWS budget.
The NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service must be restored to a world class park service – a phrase that once was used to describe the organisation by the IUCN.
NSW National Parks Photo Gallery
Go out into our NSW national parks beyond the cities and towns and enjoy the beauty of this country. There is increasing evidence of the positive health and well being benefits from being in nature. Feel refreshed and revitalised to defend our national parks. Visit: Nature For All.