Community Radio across Australia gives voices to many that the mainstream media aren’t interested in. Whether it’s the music you enjoy listening to, the opinions that won’t be voiced elsewhere, those whose ideas don’t fit into neat commercial packages or just those who aren’t big enough or important enough for their stories to be considered interesting for those outside of their local community. Often community radio is one of the things that knits a community, whether it is a geographically located community or a one that is knitted together by radio itself.
3CR Community Radio station in Melbourne, the station which hosts the Yarra BUG Radio Show, is one of these stations, but there are many more across Australia and they are all reliant on government funding to remain on air. Most stations rely on volunteers, and donations and subscriptions from listeners but still need funding to broadcast.
The Commission of Audit has recommended scrapping funding for the Community Broadcasting Program. If adopted by the Government in the upcoming budget, community radio stations could be forced off air. If you enjoy listening to community radio, in any shape or form, or even if you don’t, but believe it is important that it not only be commercial imperatives that decide what we listen to, then consider emailing Treasurer Joe Hockey to commit to keeping community radio stations on air.