Australasia

‘You will be responsible’: a mother’s warning is unheeded on Nauru

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For months in the Australian-run detention centre she pleaded for her sons. The eldest, Fariborz Karami, killed himself last week Saba Vasefi and Ben Doherty The Guardian Two days before her son took his own life on Nauru, Fazileh Mansour Beigi’s final plea for help carried with it a warning too. For months inside the Australian-run regional processing centre, Mansour Beigi had begged for help for her sons, whom she had watched deteriorate over five years in immigration detention. To ... Read More »

Deaths in offshore detention: the faces of the people who have died in Australia’s care

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Twelve refugees and asylum seekers have died while in Australian immigration detention on Manus Island and Nauru. On World Refugee Day, Guardian Australia acknowledges those who have died and begins a project to record lives lost in offshore detention Ben Doherty, Nick Evershed and Andy Ball The Guardian… Read More »

Refugees’ lives have become weapons in a rugged political contest

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For the past five years, Australia has used the lives of 2,000 innocent refugees as a political game Behrouz Boochani The Guardian On 19 July 2013, Kevin Rudd, the then prime minister of the Labor government, announced the resumption of offshore processing. According to the policy, whoever came to Australia by boat would be exiled to Manus Island and Nauru. Together with 60 other people travelling on a leaky boat headed for Australia, I was lost on the ocean when the ... Read More »

Adamstown Heights child sexual assault case: “Naming and shaming” on social media can affect how a matter proceeds in court

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THE sexual assault of a child is confronting and sickening to any person who recognises the special vulnerability of children, and their lack of defences when adults abuse their power. Joanne McCarthy Newcastle Herald It is why the Australian public so strongly supported establishment of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in 2012. As a community we said yes to a five-year inquiry that was, at its heart, about the rights of the child to remain innocent, safe, loved and ... Read More »

Community Sector Protests Cuts to Asylum Seeker Support Payments

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Community sector leaders have gathered in Canberra to protest cuts to asylum seeker support payments, as a new report reveals that government policy is driving people seeking asylum into destitution. Luke Michael ProBono Leaders from 10 national NGOs, along with a delegation of asylum seekers and community members, gathered at Parliament House on Monday to urge the federal government to stop cuts to the Status Resolution Support Service (SRSS). This service provides asylum seekers with a basic safety net of ... Read More »

For Eurydice’s sake, we need to do more than go to vigils

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Of all the violent deaths of women, the death of Eurydice Dixon, the 22-year-old rising comic, is one we can embrace when we signal our opposition to violence against women. Jenna Price The Canberra Times We see it’s not her fault. A stranger allegedly killed her and no one could predict that. It could not have been her fault. In the contemporary era, the story of Eurydice Dixon begins with Anita Cobby, the kind and… Janine Balding. Jill Meagher. Even ... Read More »

Is Our Wealth and Privilege Making Us Miserable?

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Psychologist Adam Blanch considers why so many Australians are anxious despite being safer, wealthier, more privileged and more educated than ever before. Adam Blanch ProBono “Dear Adam, I am interested in your perspective. I look around and think as a society that we have more than we have ever had, but everyone seems more anxious and more depressed than ever before. What do you think is going on?” – Anon Dear Anon, I have had the privilege of living in ... Read More »

Bring Julian Assange Home

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The persecution of Julian Assange must end. Or it will end in tragedy. The Australian government and prime minister Malcolm Turnbull have an historic opportunity to decide which it will be. John Pilger CounterPunch They can remain silent, for which history will be unforgiving. Or they can act in the interests of justice and humanity and bring this remarkable Australian citizen home. Assange does not ask for special treatment. The government has clear diplomatic and moral obligations to protect Australian ... Read More »

To design safer parks for women, city planners must listen to their stories

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The rape and murder of aspiring comedian Eurydice Dixon in an inner-city Melbourne park – while deeply shocking – is part of an avalanche of gendered violence perpetrated against women in cities every day. Dr. Nicole Kalms The Conversation Nothing can protect women from the random acts of violence committed by some men but engaging with the stories of women and girls is crucial for making cities safer. Planners, architects, the police and politicians need to put aside the traditional ... Read More »

Greer is right to say rape law has failings, but wrong to suggest its decriminalisation

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Germaine Greer is a provocateur of long standing. Her recent comments about rape enhance that reputation. Authors: The Conversation We accept Greer’s premise: rape law has profound and persistent failings. The #metoo movement has made vivid what rape researchers already know: rape is common. While reports to Australian police have risen, reporting and conviction rates remain low. Greer claims proving rape is too difficult, and rape without physical injury doesn’t warrant prosecution. However, her account of the harm of rape ... Read More »

Sex offender registers don’t reduce re-offending, study finds

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Online public sex offender registries do not stop those on the registry from reoffending, a new report has found. Andrew Brown The Canberra Times The Australian Institute of Criminology report found that while a public registry that lists details such as the face, name and addresses of sex offenders have a small effect on deterring first-time offenders, it does not have any impact on decreasing recidivism. “Despite having strong public support, they appear to have little effect on levels of ... Read More »

Drones, donations and court drama in Chau Chak Wing defamation battle

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It is, perhaps, a fitting symbol of the level of interest in the dispute: as a high-stakes Federal Court defamation battle played out between Chinese-Australian billionaire Chau Chak Wing and Fairfax Media, a drone was spotted hovering outside the court… Michaela Whitbourn The Sydney Morning Herald Justice Michael Wigney wasn’t pointing any fingers in his 19th-floor courtroom in Sydney’s Law Courts building. It might have been a “complete and utter coincidence”, he said genially, and there was no basis for ... Read More »

Liberal Party council votes to sell off the ABC and move Australian embassy to Jerusalem

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The Liberal Party’s peak council has voted almost 2:1 to privatise the ABC in a call that was swiftly rejected by cabinet ministers amid warnings it would be “total madness” to act on the call. David Crowe The Age The overwhelming vote at the party’s annual council in Sydney gained vocal support from conservative think-tank Institute of Public Affairs, which said the company could be sold or given to Australians who already own it. The vote came in a debate ... Read More »

SA’s ethnic schools to expand under languages initiative

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South Australia’s ethnic schools network will be expanded to allow more students to study secondary language into Year 12 as part of a suite of measures announced by the… Stephanie Richards InDaily Education Minister John Gardner said the government was working with the state’s Ethnic Schools Association to ensure more schools offered out-of-school-hours language programs beyond the… As InDaily previously reported, the proportion of South Australian students choosing to study a language in Year 12 has fallen by more than half in ... Read More »

‘Stay safe’: why women are enraged by advice to steer clear of violent men

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This week, a man allegedly raped and murdered a young woman – emerging comedian Eurydice Dixon – as she walked home from a comedy gig. 19-year-old Jaymes Todd has since been charged with one count of murder and one count of rape. Bianca Fileborn The Conversation In the wake of yet another tragic – but, importantly, not unavoidable – loss of a woman’s life, police predictably advised people to “stay safe” by engaging in a range of “protective” strategies. The ... Read More »

‘Not equal before the law’: Why regional drug addicts are often sent to jail, not rehab

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A retired judge has backed calls for more drug rehabilitation centres in the bush, warning addicts in regional areas are too often thrown behind bars. Background Briefing – By Bronwyn Adcock ABC John Nicholson SC served as a New South Wales District Court judge for more than a decade and regularly presided over sittings in Dubbo, where drug-related crime is high. When sentencing offenders, Mr Nicholson told Background Briefing there were times he had no choice but to impose a jail ... Read More »