A Winchelsea mother is holding tentative hope that a road safety legislation amendment introduced into parliament this week will bring justice for her son.
Jeynelle Dean-Hayes and her family have campaigned for drivers of alleged hit and runs to immediately lose their licence until their case is dealt with since her son Tyler was struck and killed by a car at Buckley in 2017.
This week, Police Minister Lisa Neville introduced the Road Safety and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2019 into parliament, which proposes to introduce immediate license suspensions for excessive speeding offences and where someone has been charged with using a motor vehicle as a weapon to commission a serious offence.
Ms Dean-Hayes said when Ms Neville’s office called to inform her of the bill’s tabling, she was thrilled, but was cautious of getting her hopes up.
“I knew that they were working on it, but I had no idea that it was actually that far along,” she said.
“It was an incredible surprise to hear that, but at the same time, we’re afraid to get our hopes up; it still has to go through the dispute process.”
A petition Ms Dean-Hayes launched after Tyler’s death has almost 34,000 signatures, and she said if the proposed amendment became legislation it would bring justice not just for her family, but for others whose family and friends had been killed on the roads.
“It’s not just us and our family that are sitting here saying ‘this has to be changed’, it’s thousands and thousands of people who are saying this is not right, that it needs to be different,” she said.
“We’re hopeful that the majority can see the reasoning behind this and the common sense behind it.
“If the reform comes through, then I can take a break, and take a breath and try to figure out how to keep getting up in the morning after that, but if it doesn’t then I’m not done, I’ll keep fighting until something is done.”
See today’s Colac Herald for more.