Dear Courier-Mail Editor,

As a Moorooka resident, I must declare that Liberal Member Gary Hardgrave does not speak for me in saying that my suburb is “exhausted� by the “influx� of African refugees and that we “need a break�.

I would like both local businesses and residents to know that I was not interested in purchasing a house at Moorooka until I visited the suburb and realised how beautiful and cosmopolitan the area had become.

Living in a suburb with a rich World War II history, I believe it’s an absolute pleasure and privilege to welcome peace and harmony to those fleeing from war-torn countries.

After reading about the blatant genocide taking place in Dafur in Sudan, crying over the rape of women by militia and experiencing shock regarding the recruitment of child soldiers across a number of African nations, I cannot help but smile when I find myself shopping, travelling and playing alongside my new African neighbours. I smile because I am glad that they are now safe.

When ogling over the beautiful African babies, a friend and I delight in imagining them growing up with an Australian accent.

As a first generation Australian of Italian heritage, a culture that was instrumental in transforming food in Australia, I revel in the new African delicacies I discover each time I visit a new restaurant that’s popped up nearby.

My new neighbours bring colour and life to my world and I smile wisely in the knowledge that their alternative in their home countries lacked lustre and brought only trauma.

As a member of Southside Peace Group, I’ve had some members of the local community look at me strangely when I have exclaimed that the Liberal Party’s policies are inherently racist.

Today’s front page headlines featuring Gary Hardgrave have confirmed that his leadership is encouraging racial discrimination in my community. We must vote him out.

If you, like me, say no to war and racism and wish to vote the Liberal Hargrave out, please visit

3 thoughts on “Beautiful Africans at my doorstep

  1. Elissa, met you at the World Refugee Day breakfast and I just found your blog . Am delighted to read your thoughts. I missed this originally in the C-M but you speak for many of us who find the current government’s dog whistling on refugees an affront. Thanks and good luck.

  2. I abhor racism but there are rumours that younger immigrants from Africa are forming gangs. Have you heard anything about this?

  3. I just found these comments! Woops!

    I know nothing of this and feel very comfortable and safe in Moorooka. Also, I had friends at highschool that were in so-called ‘gangs’. To me, it’s just short phase stuff for teenagers looking to assert their independence.

    I walk around Moorooka a lot and have never been hassled by gangs. In fact, I’ve never been hassled by anyone.

    Perhaps people are mistaking ‘gangs’ for young people in groups hanging out, minding their own business and enjoying the freedoms this great city of Brisbane offers all its residents.

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