Hannah Plint.
Hannah Plint.

Criticism shocks charity

AS IF the trauma of losing her daughter and helping others deal with their grief wasn't harrowing enough, Katherine Plint also has to endure cruel insults.

Mrs Plint and her husband Andrew set up Hannah's Foundation – a drowning prevention, awareness and support charity – in the name of their two-year-old daughter who drowned at their home in 2007.

She has suffered criticism before but now she says she and the foundation are being harassed for their input to pool safety laws.

“This week I received the most disgusting and cowardly phone call from a member of the public,” Mrs Plint said.

“Whilst being on call for family support services I don't expect members of the public accusing me of killing my own child, blaming me for the laws and warning me to stop our campaign.

“I find this woman's behaviour repulsive, uneducated, arrogant and simply venomous. She was quite heartless to ring a grieving mother and abuse me like she did. This is the fourth year this has happened and seriously the rubbish has to stop. I am over it.”

She said she recently resigned from being the foundation's public face to concentrate on coronial inquests and supporting families.

To make matters worse, Mrs Plint said the latest criticism came when Hannah's Foundation was struggling financially.

“Right now I am looking at the foundation's bank account balance of $616,” she said.

“We are unable to support families like we used to and have had to re-address the funding we did provide.”

Infrastructure and Planning Minister Stirling Hinchliffe was disgusted by the “hate mail and hurtful phone calls”.

“Anyone with issues or complaints about the new laws should pick on me – not the Plint family,'' Mr Hinchliffe said.

“While Andrew and Katherine offered valuable advice and insight during the review process, they are not responsible for the new laws.

“This family has dedicated themselves to helping others despite their own tragic loss and I call on anyone with anger or abuse to direct it my way, not theirs.''

To donate to Hannah's Foundation go to www.givenow.com.au/hannahsfoundation or www.hannahsfoundation.org.au.

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