Make the Yarra swimmable


Sam Wallman

Sam Wallman is a unionist and cartoonist based on unceded Wurundjeri country. He is a member of the Workers Art Collective. His new longform book,  Our Members Be Unlimited: a Comic About Unions is out now through Scribe Publications. You can follow his work here.

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  1. I once swallowed some Yarra River water, near Warrandyte. Next day I was covered in large pustules.
    That was forty years ago.
    God knows what’s floating in there now.
    Go for it Sam.

  2. Sam great poster !

    Did a quick look and found the focus group for the river use in CBD area

    There are 24O kms of river side from the hills/Yarra ranges to the “port Phillip” bay

    Has there been interest by #MUA (or Vic Trades Hall ?)

    The 1970s era “green ban” BLF (now CFMMEU) members defended the city baths in swanston street as a workers amenity and officers swam there regularly …. do you know more about FirstNations communities and workers organisations who want to make Birrung river side amenities like pools for cbd residents, workers and tourists ?

  3. I’d suggest the Yarra be made a habitable ecosystem for all wildlife again before any human dips so much as a toe in its waterway, even if that means doing away with all the different forms of human encroachment upon what made the river much much less than what it was pre white settlement. Big sacrifices are needed if we are to get anywhere near reining in climate change and all the other forms of environmental destruction wrought by human hands and minds.

  4. @green christmas
    Allowing people to swim in a clearly defined area of the Yarra wouldn’t have much environmental impact, and it’s a great way to engage all kinds of people in the broader project of cleaning up the catchment. I completely agree that many sacrifices are going to be needed, but there’s got to be some carrots as well as sticks, and I think the promise of a clean pool to splash about in a lovely one.

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