- Devonport City Council - https://www.devonport.tas.gov.au -

Community safety at tributes collection a priority

To ensure community safety is a priority during the collection of tributes at Hillcrest Primary School on Friday evening, a series of safety measures will be in place.

Devonport City Council General Manager Matthew Atkins said families and the community are welcome to attend in quiet reflection during the collection from 5pm on Friday, 31 December 2021, outside the school on Lawrence Drive.

Mr Atkins asked for the community’s support by avoiding the section of Lawrence Drive outside the school between 4-6pm, if at all possible.

For those attending, parking is available along Lovett St, near the soccer club.

He said COVID safety measures would require those attending aged 12 years-plus to wear masks; everyone 16 years-plus to use the Check in TAS app (or sign in); and to be mindful of physical distancing.

“While our focus is to collect the thousands of tributes in the most respectful and sensitive way possible with the community, we also need safety measures to help protect those attending,” Mr Atkins said.

“The section of Lawrence Drive outside the school will be tightly supervised by police to safely manage any traffic.

“We will close off the circular drive near the school gates and the area for those attending will be clearly marked. Seating isn’t being provided as it’s anticipated to be a fairly short and peaceful time for the community. We ask families to closely watch their children during the collection.”

Mr Atkins said Council will store the tributes safely and work with the family members, and the Hillcrest school community, to create a permanent memorial to honour the six students taken to soon.

“We hope that the collection of the tributes on New Year’s Eve at 5pm, will provide a time for people to reflect on the outpouring of love and support that has been shown by our community and beyond,” Mr Atkins said.

“While we can’t take away the anguish that our community is currently going through, we are accessing expert advice to do what we can to ‘be there’ and provide support as we all go forward.

“I encourage everyone who is able to be there for each other, to offer support to your friends, your family and your neighbours and reach out to organisations such as Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636.”

Devonport City Council has a dedicated webpage [1] where people can access the public condolence book, make a donation to the Hillcrest Community Public Fund and also seek the help they may need.


DIRECTION FOR MEDIA:

Please be advised a media pool arrangement will be in place for the tribute collection at Hillcrest Primary School on Friday, 31 December 2021 from 5pm.

ABC Tasmania and The Advocate Newspaper will be pooling for other media outlets and can be contacted for images.

Media pool participants will only be allowed to take still images and film (no filming of children). The event will not be live streamed and media interviews with attendees will not be permitted.

Contacts for the media outlets:

  • ABC Tasmania: (03) 6235 3333.
  • The Advocate Newspaper: (03) 6440 7409.

Media contacts:

Tahnia Creedon | Communications and Engagement Officer | Devonport City Council | 03 64240562| tcreedon@devonport.tas.gov.au