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    Posted April 26, 2013 by
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    Tecoma, The Little Town That Roared

    Community Fronts McDonalds

    Global PR Coverage Forces Long Awaited Meeting With McDonalds’ Management

    Dandenong Ranges, Victoria – 26/04/13 – The hills community have finally forced a meeting with McDonalds’ management after an extremely successful PR campaign bought global attention on the troubled Tecoma project. A representative team of six delegates met with McDonalds’ management at a city location early this week in an attempt to articulate the community’s overwhelming rejection of the planned store. “The Tecoma project is undoubtedly the most contentious development ever for McDonalds’ Australian operation. It is our belief that this is the first time McDonalds have met face to face with a protest group. We used the opportunity to show our strength and resolve in having this development stopped as per the community’s wish” said No McDonalds in the Dandenong Ranges’ spokesperson Garry Muratore

    The meeting was first requested immediately after October’s VCAT ruling, since then the community campaign has gone viral with the group’s members now in the thousands across the hills and many more from around Australia and internationally. “We told McDonalds of our unshakeable sense of community with our members being represented in almost every community organisation in the hills. The Dandenongs has one of the highest volunteer participation rates in the country, so the opposition to the Tecoma store grows via osmosis as our members go about their community responsibilities” said Muratore

    On the Sunday prior to the meeting the No McDonalds In The Dandenong Ranges group organised yet another community meeting at the primary school that is opposite the site. The meeting like most of the group’s recent events was well supported with several hundreds packing into the school hall for a Q & A session with the community delegates. The crowd also heard an update on the proposed demolition from Cr. Samantha Dunne as well as an update on the enormously successful PR campaign from the group’s campaign team. “The world is watching Tecoma” the crowd was told to deafening cheers “McDonalds ain’t seen nothing yet”. The meeting was also used to create hundreds of “community pledges” telling McDonalds what each individual was prepared to do if the Tecoma development went ahead. These pledges were gathered and presented to McDonalds at the city meeting.

    “McDonalds were told in no uncertain terms that the community will not back down. 9 out of 10 people in Tecoma don’t want this and we finally had the opportunity to present the unquestionable data to them in person” said Muratore. “We are a technology connected community and can have hundreds of people to the site on a minute’s notice. To go ahead with Tecoma would no doubt be a PR disaster for McDonalds. They now know that Tecoma is “the little town that roared” and the opportunity for McDonalds to respect the wishes of the community and back out would be welcomed by the entire hills community”

    The group has also called on McDonalds CEO Catriona Noble to meet with the hills elected representatives. “If thousands across the hills and millions around the world can’t get the CEO to engage then maybe if she hears it from all levels of government, local, state and federal she will realise that Tecoma is a problem that McDonalds need not have” said Muratore. The group is was also buoyed by comments from Planning Minister Matthew Guy on talkback radio saying “Tecoma is one that VCAT got wrong” Mr.Guy too has indicated in meetings he would be happy to meet with McDonalds’ CEO if it could be arranged.

    Further details can be found at www.burgeroff.org
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