Cootamundra-Gundagai Regional Council (CGRC), Mayor Charlie Sheahan is calling on the community to show some respect, patience and empathy to Council staff, who are at present under enormous pressure.

“The social media keyboard warriors have been particularly scathing of Council staff of late, and I find it extremely disappointing. Our community is better than this and I do acknowledge that it is a select few who for some reason want to attack our staff from all quarters,” Mayor Sheahan said.

“Enough is enough, our staff are working as hard as they can, to fill potholes, mow and maintain our parks and gardens, offer great customer service, and continue to ensure our communities get the services they expect. They have had huge challenges thrown at them; the wet weather has seen grounds too wet to get machinery on to mow. Everyone would be griping if Council vehicles were bogged and ripped up sporting fields and parks. Our road crews have been doing their very best to ensure that dangerous potholes and local road damage is repaired as quickly possible, however when motorists drive through water over the road an ignore road closed signs they contribute to the workload. Placing signs and barriers to keep people safe takes time and money, the same time and money that could be spent on fixing roads. Our office staff are dealing with abusive customers who quiet frankly are being downright rude and offensive. I’m disappointed, I genuinely feel that our community is so much better than this,” Mayor Sheahan said.

A recent safety meeting held by staff highlighted what staff were dealing with, and the social media posts caused staff to raise their concerns about the negative sentiment and insulting comments that they felt were being directed at them personally.

“Our staff are dealing with weather limitations, budget constraints, de-merger uncertainty and staff shortages, and they continue to strive to meet the expectations of our communities. This aggressive and belligerent behaviour from the community needs to stop. Potholes and road damage are not unique to CGRC, long grass and untidy looking sporting fields are not exclusive to our communities. Show our staff some respect, give them your support and have a good look over the borders to neighbouring council areas, it’s the same everywhere. Just take a little time and give some thanks that we live in a wonderful part of the country, we have our challenges, but we are a resilient and robust community, who take care of each other,” Mayor Sheahan added.