‘Get off the kids backs, they have enough to cope with’: Furious mum lashes out at council workers for destroying small BMX dirt jumps in a suburban park during lockdown
- Sutherland Shire Council, in south Sydney, has banned homemade bike jumps
- The council will destroy the jumps and tracks that were made by local children
- Parents said the council were listening to a vocal minority and not local families
- Petition started by local mum who said the jumps prompted kids to be outdoors
- One mum asked whether the work done on Thursday was an ‘essential service’
An Australian mother has slammed her local government after council workers destroyed a series of kids’ BMX dirt jumps in a community park.
Taking to the Everything Sutherland Shire Facebook page on Thursday, the Sydney mother-of-two questioned why stay-at-home orders did not apply to the council workers who removed the bike jumps.
Sydney is currently under a strict lockdown which requires residents to not leave their houses unless there is an essential reason.
A local spotted council workers destroying the bike jumps at Miranda Park on Thursday morning (pictured)
Locals asked whether the work was ‘essential’ enough to do during lockdown
Furious parents have slammed the Sutherland Shire Council, in south Sydney, for banning their children’s homemade bike jumps (pictured above)
‘Sutherland Shire Council, not sure destroying bike jumps in Miranda Park this morning is an essential service. We are in lockdown,’ she wrote.
Her post prompted a flood of comments from locals who agreed and also asked why they even needed to be removed in the first place.
‘Get off the kids backs they have enough to cope with,’ one person said and added workers could be better utilised cleaning up Sutherland’s streets.
‘Kids can’t have any fun?’ questioned another.
‘Kids are being so brave and doing their best at the moment. No school, friends, sports, arts … very poor decision from council,’ added a third.
Sutherland Council in 2020 said they would remove any homemade bike jumps in local parks because they were unsafe and damaging to the environment.
The bike tracks have become popular with local children throughout lockdowns as one of their only activities that remained unaffected by restrictions.
The council issued a letterbox pamphlet (pictured above) warning local residents the unauthorised bike jumps built on council reserves would be filled in and removed
Locals commenting on the removal of the bike jumps said they were one of the few outdoor activities kids could enjoy under the current restrictions
Local mother Karen Ward launched an online petition to keep the bike jumps last year which gained more than 2,400 signatures.
The petition was sparked after Sutherland Shire Council, in south Sydney, distributed letterbox pamphlets last week warning residents bike jumps made at local reserves and parks would be flattened.
The council said the jumps were ‘damaging our natural environment’, ‘impacting on the amenity of parks’ and ‘creating hazards that pose a risk to public safety’.
Ms Ward’s petition said that: ‘Kids are constantly criticised for always being on screens, not doing anything and being lazy. These kids are not.’
Parents said the council had only been listening to a vocal minority and the bike jumps encouraged children to communicate and play outdoors (file image bike rider pictured)
‘We need to encourage kids to be outside, use their brains, teamwork and to get physical,’ she explained.
She also said taxpayer dollars could be better spent elsewhere.
‘Why don’t you engage with the youth and support their activities on the mainly unused council land,’ she asked.
Sutherland Council’s planned rehabilitation works will see jumps removed, holes filled in, and fencing and logs used to block access to the tracks.
Riders have been encouraged to instead use community bike tracks and trails built by the council.
Sutherland Shire Council told Daily Mail Australia the bike jumps presented a pressing risk to public safety and there were other locations children could go in the area to ride bikes.
‘[We are] working to remediate significant damage done to one of our best loved and well utilised community assets, Miranda Park, caused by the construction of unauthorised bike jumps,’ a spokesperson said.
‘These works have been prompted by a considerable concerns from surrounding residents about the safety hazard posed by unauthorised bike jump construction, as well as the degradation of endangered native vegetation.’
Works being carried out include removal of rubbish, filling in holes and removing the bike jumps which have been assess as not safe.
‘These works aimed at addressing the immediate threat to public safety. After further engagement with the surrounding community, additional works are planned which will address the damage done to endangered bushland.’
Local families have established a petition calling for the council to leave the bike jumps as they are and allow children to continue to build and work together (file image bike pictured)