Jai's dad heads to Sydney
A WEARY Steve Drummond cut a lonely figure as he hauled two heavy bags of papers on to the afternoon flight to Sydney yesterday.
The papers represent five months of work by Mr Drummond as he struggles to understand what went wrong at Mullumbimby High School last August, and what led to the death of his son, Jai Morcom.
Mr Drummond has collected 1200 signed letters for the Coroner, and 1400 for the Education Minister, Verity Firth, from community members equally concerned with the processes following Jai’s death.
The letters question specific aspects of the incident, the events leading up to and following it, and the subsequent investigation.
“They include affidavits and key references that alltogether paint a picture,” Mr Drummond said.
“I’ve lost my son and I just want to be heard.”
Calls from The Star to the Education Minister Verity Firth’s office were not returned yesterday.
State Ballina MP Don Page empathised with Mr Drummond’s situation and contacted Ms Firth himself.
“I’ve just spoken in person with the Minister and she is more than happy to meet with Steve next week,” Mr Page said.
“She did the right thing putting extra resources into Mullumbimby High, and she is someone who can help now.”
Mr Drummond will deliver his submission to the Coroner in Glebe today and meet the Coronial Inquiry Unit tomorrow.
He will then meet the Minister next Tuesday.
“All I’ve ever asked for in all this is a little respect,” Mr Drummond said.
“I’m extremely grateful to the Minister for taking the time to hear me, and perhaps discuss the issue of youth violence.”
Tweed-Byron detectives handed up their brief of evidence to the Coroner last week – a week earlier than expected.