RESIDENTS will hold a silent vigil in St Peters at 9:30am today as 62-year-old Shelley Jensen is forced from her home for WestCONnex.

The vigil will take place as removalists take Ms Jensen’s belongings from her home of 16 years, which was forcibly acquired by the Roads and Maritime Service (RMS) for the $17 billion tollway. Ms Jensen received just $960,000 compensation for her three-bedroom home, leaving her unable to repurchase in the local area. The RMS is relocating her to a flat for two months. 

The vigil and Ms Jensen’s eviction comes the day after Premier Mike Baird released the long-delayed Russell review into the forced acquisitions process and outlined a number of reforms. 

“It is unforgivable that Mike Baird sat on this review for years while he forced thousands of people from their homes and businesses for WestCONnex, and made them fight for their legal entitlements,” said WestCONnex Action Group (WAG) spokesperson Rhea Liebmann.

“We've had many distressed families and residents like Shelley come to us with horrible stories about how the RMS has ripped them off up to hundreds of thousands of dollars. For these people, the extra $50,000 in compensation promised by Premier Baird will be too little, too late – and many won’t be eligible for it anyway. 

“Premier Baird has also failed to make sure that people who are forced from their homes and businesses will be given enough compensation to allow them to stay in their local area. 

“And unless these reforms stop government agencies like the RMS getting away with cheating people out of just compensation, nothing will change. 

“We stand in solidarity with Shelley and every person who’s been forced through Mike Baird’s unfair forced acquisitions, and we demand that he take real action to give everyone who’s been put through this the just compensation they deserve,” said Ms Liebmann.

WHAT:    Silent vigil for residents being evicted by WestCONnex

WHEN:    9:30am to 1pm, Wednesday 19 October

WHERE: Corner Campbell Rd and Crown St, St Peters, 2044

Media contacts: Rhea Liebmann 0410 517 343, Alana West 0421 336 365


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