Australasia

Genocide statue for Preston’s Ray Bramham Gardens is dividing the community

A decision to install monument honouring the victims of genocide in a Melbourne park has angered a host of ethnic groups – even prompting the Turkish Consulate General to demand that the project be scrapped… Source: Genocide statue for Preston’s Ray Bramham Gardens is dividing the community Read More »

Voters in marginal seats want more compassionate asylum policy, poll shows

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Exclusive: A ReachTel poll of Victorian seat of Indi, New England in NSW and voters in South Australia finds just 26% support policy of sending all boat arrivals to offshore detention. The majority of voters in key marginal electorates want the federal government to take a more compassionate approach to asylum seekers who arrive in Australia by… Source: Voters in marginal seats want more compassionate asylum policy, poll shows | Australia news | The Guardian Read More »

Overhaul ‘broken system’ of dealing with domestic violence, says royal commission

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Victorian premier Daniel Andrews pledges to introduce all 227 proposals, including support for victims to return to homes and get through court cases • Follow all the reaction to the commission’s recommendations here… Source: Overhaul ‘broken system’ of dealing with domestic violence, says royal commission | Australia news | The Guardian Read More »

History repeats: 20 years of political homophobia from the religious right

The erosion of Safe Schools has echoes of a similar program undermined by religious conservatives 20 years ago, but the issue of LGBTI rights isn’t going away. Almost 20 years ago in 1997, a federal youth suicide prevention program aimed at gay and lesbian teenagers was scrapped after a backlash from the religious right… Source: History repeats: 20 years of political homophobia from the religious right | Brian Greig | Opinion | The Guardian Read More »

Refugee organisations lay off staff as 12,000 Syrian refugees to be resettled in Australia in limbo

Carmen Lazar is used to receiving thanks from Syrian refugees, including digital bouquets of flowers posted on her Facebook page, but now the tireless president of the NSW based Assyrian Resource Centre has been called a “liar” by those who had hoped to call Australia home by now. As well as managing disappointment, other refugee organisations have been forced to lay off… Source: Refugee organisations lay off staff as 12,000 Syrian refugees to be resettled in Australia in limbo Read More »

There’s Nothing ‘PC’ About Objecting To Racial Profiling, It Just Doesn’t Work

OPINION: Critics say opposition to racial profiling hampers police, and accuse activists of being politically correct. But as the evidence makes clear, the discriminatory practice in fact lowers the success rate of searches. On top of harming minority groups it also wastes time and resources, writes Tamar Hopkins. Victoria Police’s zero tolerance policy on racialMore… Source: There’s Nothing ‘PC’ About Objecting To Racial Profiling, It Just Doesn’t Work – New Matilda Read More »

Ms Dhu’s Hidden Pain: How To Hurt An Aboriginal Family Without Even Really Trying

A decision by a West Australian coroner to suppress video of the final hours of a young woman’s excruciating death has re-traumatised a devastated family, writes Amy McQuire Four months shy of her 23rd birthday, Yamatji woman Ms Dhu lay in excruciating pain, unable to sit up, in a South Hedland watchhouse. It was aMore… Source: Ms Dhu’s Hidden Pain: How To Hurt An Aboriginal Family Without Even Really Trying – New Matilda Read More »

Time to reform electoral funding laws

EDITORIAL As Australia enters the early stages of what is likely to be a lengthy federal election campaign, it is imperative that all candidates for political office and those behind their party machines commit to exceed, not just meet, the legal requirements on funding disclosures. It is the spirit of those laws that matters most, and the goal is transparency. The fundamental purpose of… Source: Time to reform electoral funding laws Read More »

Fiona Richardson tells Australian Story of violent alcoholic father

Victoria’s first Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence Fiona Richardson has revealed that her father was a violent alcoholic, who beat her mother and siblings. Ms Richardson, who is also the state’s Minister for Women, returned to her birth country of Tanzania with her family for an ABC TV Australian Story program about her violent family history. The program was aired just a day before the… Source: Fiona Richardson tells Australian Story of violent alcoholic father Read More »

The democratic case for splitting Queensland in two

As state governments do less and less, there ought to be more and more of them. The renewed push to split Queensland into two states should be just the beginning, writes Chris Berg. “Most persons think that a state in order to be happy ought to be large,” wrote Aristotle in his Politics, “but even… Source: The democratic case for splitting Queensland in two – The Drum (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) Read More »

Careless Donald Trump is a danger to Australia and Asia

Donald Trump has made an idiotic and potentially incendiary claim about one of the world’s most flammable strategic tinder boxes. Asia has serious strategic problems. It needs serious strategic solutions. Instead, on the weekend it got the thoughts, if that’s what you can call them, of Donald Trump… Source: Careless Donald Trump is a danger to Australia and Asia Read More »

Hecs loans repayment threshold should drop to $42,000, report says

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Grattan Institute recommends dropping threshold from $54,000 to $42,000 to save budget $500m, and finds ‘unscrupulous providers’ contribute to $10bn debt. Default rates on government education loans have increased after a massive uptake of loans for vocational education and training, including courses pushed by “unscrupulous… Source: Hecs loans repayment threshold should drop to $42,000, report says | Australia news | The Guardian Read More »

Opinion: Don’t Miss the Boat on Australian and U.S. Policy in the South China Sea

Australia’s 2016 Defense White Paper expresses concern over “friction” in the South China Sea (SCS) arising from U.S.-Chinese naval interactions, and it worries that territorial disputes have created “uncertainty and tension.” Those statements, which show Canberra (like the rest of the states in the Indo-Pacific region) is slowly coming around to the gathering threat posed […] Source: Opinion: Don’t Miss the Boat on Australian and U.S. Policy in the South China Sea – USNI News Read More »

Economy rests on Christian foundations

I can’t think why, but Easter always reminds me of Christianity. Not, of course, that Christianity has anything to do with the grubby, materialist world of economics. Or does it? Australia is the most unbelieving it has ever been, with the most recent census saying that only 61 per cent people identify themselves as even nominally Christian… Source: Economy rests on Christian foundations Read More »

Religion’s tax break is a cross we shouldn’t have to bear

Religious groups are not taxable. No wonder there’s no transparency in how their billions of dollars are spent. Whether or not you are a practising Christian, Easter is a time to think about religious traditions. The ongoing proceedings of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual… Source: Religion’s tax break is a cross we shouldn’t have to bear Read More »

We welcomed refugees in 1945. We can’t abandon them today – video

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Harry Leslie Smith saw the full potential of human cruelty while he was serving Britain during the second world war. But, he says, his country showed huge compassion by settling 200,000 Polish refugees in 1945. Harry Leslie Smith, Bruno Rinvolucri and Leah Green The Guardian Today, however, he believes politicians are turning their backs on humanity by rejecting refugees fleeing war. Smith will be speaking at the Bradford Literary Festival on 23 May His book, Harry’s Last Stand, is available ... Read More »