Public challenge to politicians to ride

#MPMCChallenge organiser Jeff Frampton challenge

Public petition and social media campaign challenge politicians to become riders so they better appreciate our wants and needs.

#MPMCChallenge organiser Jeff Frampton - public challenge
#MPMCChallenge organiser Jeff Frampton

Riders are often ignored or misunderstood in road safety campaigns, government planning and road rules because so few politicians actually ride, according to one rider.

So start-up entrepreneur and Honda CB300F rider Jeff Frampton, 32, of Brisbane, has decided to challenge politicians to learn to ride, or at least pillion, and attend charity rides so they can gain an appreciation of the hazards and excitement of riding.

He has started a petition aimed specifically at all state and federal transport and road safety ministers together with a social media campaign called #MPMCchallenge.

SIGN THE PETITION NOW!

Each time someone signs the petition, the listed ministers will receive an email reminding them of the challenge. However, Jeff insists the challenge is open to all politicians at all levels of government; local, state and federal.

“We are more than a minority and we are more than a statistic; and to prove this we need you to become one of us to make motorcycling safer,” his petition says.

“We invite you to join our motorcycle community and represent our unique views on improving road safety in Australia.”

The petition asks the politicians to promote road safety for motorcyclists and to use the hashtag #MPMCchallenge whenever they complete any or all of these five challenges:

  1. Challenge your fellow MPs and policymakers to sign up to #MPMCchallenge;
  2. Obtain your learner and restricted motorcycle licences;
  3. Participate in organised charity rides as a pillion or a rider;
  4. Complete at least one advanced motorcycle course;
  5. Obtain your full ‘unrestricted’ motorcycle licence.
Local and state pollies pillion to the opening of Texas as the first mainland Motorcycle Friendly town in 2013 - public challenge
Politicians pillion to the opening of Texas as the first mainland Motorcycle Friendly town in 2013

Jeff says the petition and hashtag challenge idea came to him on a group ride when riders complained about how they felt neglected by government.

“Politicians don’t have a full grasp of what it means to be a motorcycle rider because they don’t ride,” he says.

“So I thought I’d create a public campaign challenging MPs, particularly Ministers in transport and road safety, to acquire their full licence and become a regular part of the motorcycle community.”

Jeff has been riding since 2014 and has developed a wish list for politicians:

Austroads Better roads report lane filtering - public challenge
Filtering education campaign needed
  • Better education of all motorists about changes to lane filtering;
  • Learner drivers should spend a day learning to ride as part of their car licence to experience what it is like to ride;
  • Advanced rider courses should be subsidised;
  • More parking spaces and footpath parking;
  • Fix up road shoulders and quicker response to potholes and road damage;
  • Lower registration and tolls to encourage more riders;
  • Positive road safety campaign messages for riders; and
  • Minimum safety standards for wearable safety gear.

“It seems like Australia is a dumping ground for poor-performing protective clothing at exorbitant prices,” he says.

Jeff became a rider after learning to ride horses.

“The instructor said if you want to ride it like a motorcycle I suggest you get a motorcycle licence. So I did and I haven’t ridden a horse since!”

15 Comments

  1. Should I add my 2 cents worth?
    For what it is worth experience comes from kilometres travelled, situational exposure & practice not years.
    For on road motorcycling as we know it to be permitted to exist into the future we must encourage a greater take up & promote every positive attribute of motorcycling.
    Jeff get as many bums on motorcycle seats that you can!

    1. The more the merrier Michael! Changing public opinion to be more positive about motorcycling will take time, but motorcycle ownership is already the fastest growing motor vehicle type in Australia.

  2. As part of Motorcycle Awareness Week/Month in Sydney we have kicked off a Parliamentarians Ride where experienced riders give Politicians the opportunity to either get on the back of or ride with other riders. It gives us the unique opportunity to discuss and point out issues along the way to the decision makers.
    Well done to Jeff for having a go and raising awareness of issues that all riders face every day.
    As previously mentioned we need fresh blood in the representation stakes.
    Anyone that is prepared to have a go should be given as much encouragement as possible and Jeff should get in contact with MRAQ and see what he can do to assist the.
    Well done.
    Christopher Burns
    Chairman MCC of NSW

    1. Thanks Christopher for your support.
      I hope the politicians will attend the Parliamentarians Ride and that it encourages other politicians to attend these types of events around Australia.
      I will follow up your suggestion of contacting the MRAQ to discuss whether I can provide any assistance.
      Regards
      Jeff

  3. Personally I commend your efforts Jeff.
    It is, well to me anyway, refreshing that new blood is entering into the domain.
    Keep up the good work, and I hope you manage to bring with you, a whole lot more young blood.
    I have signed your petition, and have shared it amongst my riding friends, and wish you well in your endeavour.

    Ride free, ride safe.
    Grumpy old bastard.

    1. We all welcome new riders, Mickh, but some of them think they know everything, which they don’t. I’m not accusing Jeff of this, but he is too inexperienced to be discussing motorcycling issues with politicians. Some things seem like major issues to new riders, but later they find out it only seemed that way because of their lack of experience and skill.

      1. “but he is too inexperienced to be discussing motorcycling issues with politicians.”
        How so Motorain? Jeff may have some very positive input, to motorcycle license training. As he would be more experienced with it than us old and older grumpy bastards.

        1. Okay Mickh, I didn’t make it clear enough for you. Jeff is too inexperienced to represent the entire motorcycling community. If you want to break it up into segments, he would probably be an ideal choice to represent new riders.

          “Some things seem like major issues to new riders, but later they find out it only seemed that way because of their lack of experience and skill.”

          1. MotoRain
            14TH JULY, 2016 AT 5:47 PM
            [Okay Mickh, I didn’t make it clear enough for you.] Indeed MotoRain you have made your view point very clear. [Jeff is too inexperienced to represent the entire motorcycling community.] Say you, motorcycling advocacy needs young bloods coming through the ranks and being heard. [If you want to break it up into segments, he would probably be an ideal choice to represent new riders.] Indeed I think he quite possibly would, we can see eye to eye.
            [“Some things seem like major issues to new riders, but later they find out it only seemed that way because of their lack of experience and skill.”]

            MotoRain
            14TH JULY, 2016 AT 10:04 AM
            [We all welcome new riders, Mickh,] What! As long as they all shut the hell up, and don’t exercise their democratic rights, in regards to motorcycle advocacy. [ but some of them think they know everything, which they don’t.] . (What! Just like some older riders with 10 or 40 years riding experience. [I’m not accusing Jeff of this, but he is too inexperienced to be discussing motorcycling issues with politicians.] How do you know this for a fact, he may well put both of our collective riding skills to shame. And kudos to Jeff for standing up and having a go [Some things seem like major issues to new riders, but later they find out it only seemed that way because of their lack of experience and skill.] Refer to my comment above.

            MotoRain
            13TH JULY, 2016 AT 9:14 AM
            [Problem no. 1; – “Jeff has been riding since 2014.” He is a raw beginner.] That’s your assumption, and if correct that Jeff is in fact a raw beginner he may still have some very positive input. Never underestimate a fresh set of eyes and ears, especially someone with enough gumption such as young Jeff has shown. [Anybody who has been motorcycling for less than 5 years is a learner both in riding skills and in their general understanding of motorcycling.] Really! I’ve known a few young bloods, passionate indeed, who would clock up more miles in a month than some of the older riders whom claim to represent us, clock up in a year. [Yet we repeatedly see newbies trying to dictate what the rules should be.] From Jeff’s article and replies I don’t understand this response, he has purposed a great and positive idea.
            [Problem no. 2; – Politics seems to attract people who lack common sense. I have little faith in most of them.] Yeha, the second bit of common ground and might I add, common ground with Jeff, hence why he started his petition [If we get more of them to ride some of them will crash and decide that motorcycles are too dangerous. Then they will impose irrational restrictions on us. Their decisions will be influenced by their pride. They will think that if they can’t do it safely nobody else can.] What and they haven’t already, what rock have you been hiding under for the last 50 years.
            [The solution; – Only experienced motorcyclists (riders with over 10 years experience) should have any say on the laws governing motorcycling.] We will have to agree to disagree. [Politicians and bureaucrats without this experience should shut up and listen instead of making decisions about things that they don’t understand.] Wow ground breaking, we agree on 3 points and exactly the point Jeff is making with his petition.
            See I have read your entire, IMO load of mostly negative codswallop, directed at Jeff, his idea and in general all new bloods, and IMHO, motorcycling advocacy and motorcycling in general has no room for bigotry, of any form.
            And in my book, young Jeff, can come share a ride, a jar and a yarn, with this, old grumpy bastard, any day.

            Ride Free and Ride Safe
            Grumpy Old Bastard

    2. Your support is appreciated Mick, thank you.
      My contribution was simply to promote the idea of creating an opportunity for us to share our views with the decision-makers. I’ve put the idea to the community and it is now in their hands.
      I encourage everyone to read the comments made by the people who have signed the petition.
      Jeff

      1. Hi Jeff.
        Jeff, it is me who appreciates your efforts in supporting my chosen lifelong lifestyle and it is, I, along with, what should be, all Australian Motorcyclists, thanking you.
        It is the young bloods like yourself that hold the future of motorcycling in your grasp, not mine, and not that of the old fossils (like myself) whom claim (which I don’t) our representation.
        Let me just say this, bigotry is the single biggest factor, which has worked against motorcycling from with-in, and from the out, that legislate against us, ignore and hinder our calls for change, and whom target us as second class citizens and revenue fodder.
        May your corners never end, may the shit eating grin never be taken away from you, may you ride in peace without bigotry and fear.
        Ride free and ride safe.
        Grumpy Old Bastard.

        1. Hi Mick
          For a guy who claims to be a ‘grumpy old bastard’ you do share some kind words which I appreciate and thank you.
          Every time I have pulled over to the side of the road – for a break, or to adjust something, or check directions – there has been a random motorcyclist slowing down or stopping to check that I’m OK. It is the camaraderie like this, the attention to detail and genuine concern of my training instructors and mentors, and the group rides on weekends that has inspired me to stand up for this community.
          There are many others I know, young and not-so-young, who will do the same.
          Jeff

  4. Problem no. 1; – “Jeff has been riding since 2014.” He is a raw beginner. Anybody who has been motorcycling for less than 5 years is a learner both in riding skills and in their general understanding of motorcycling. Yet we repeatedly see newbies trying to dictate what the rules should be.

    Problem no. 2; – Politics seems to attract people who lack common sense. I have little faith in most of them. If we get more of them to ride some of them will crash and decide that motorcycles are too dangerous. Then they will impose irrational restrictions on us. Their decisions will be influenced by their pride. They will think that if they can’t do it safely nobody else can.

    The solution; – Only experienced motorcyclists (riders with over 10 years experience) should have any say on the laws governing motorcycling. Politicians and bureaucrats without this experience should shut up and listen instead of making decisions about things that they don’t understand.

    1. That’s a very negative reply.

      Regardless of experience, anybody trying to push a positive agenda for motorcyclists should be encouraged. Instead of writing off Jeff’s efforts, if you are concerned with a lack of experience, wouldn’t a more positive action be to contact him, to offer your advice and guidance and support his efforts instead of simply criticising?

      Secondly, ‘Common Sense’ is entirely subjective. What makes sense to one person will be anathema to another. Policy should be dictated by objectively measured standards rather than simply opinion. The ‘us and them’ attitude towards politicians is unhelpful and does not encourage cooperation and change.

      If you say that only motocyclists with 10 years experience should have a say on laws, by that logic only politicians with 10 years experience should have a say on the political and policy making process. Your attitude towards them is no different to the way you perceive their attitude towards motorcyclists.
      Any change in laws or road rules for us affect other road users as well, shouldn’t they get a say too or is it only motorcyclists with experience that count?

      If we want to change anything for the better and make the roads safer for motorcyclists, positive campaigning based on hard facts is the way forward, nobody improves anything with such discouraging negativity.

    2. Hi MotoRain, firstly, I appreciate your feedback. In response to your concerns:
      Problem no. 1 “we repeatedly see newbies trying to dictate what the rules should be”. I am advocating improvements to rider training so that motorcyclists have the skills, abilities and experience to avoid accidents. This has no impact on experienced riders. My petition is an invitation for our political representatives in road safety to join our community and recognise our concerns – nothing more.

      Problem no. 2 “[politicians] will think that if they can’t do it safely nobody else can”. If a politician or any other rider gains a licence and has an at-fault crash, then clearly there needs to be some improvements to motorcycle training. The aim of this road safety campaign is to reduce motorcycle fatalities.

      Your solution “Politicians and bureaucrats without this experience should shut up and listen instead of making decisions about things that they don’t understand.” The current problem is; they are making these decisions whether they have this experience or not. This campaign is the first step in getting these decision makers to join the community and listen to our concerns.
      Cheers, Jeff

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