Australasia

Is this the Australia we want?

Australia is heading in the wrong direction when it comes to tackling growing incarceration and suicide rates, charitible giving, and sustainability levels, according to… Maggie Coggan PRObonoAustralia The Community Council for Australia’s (CCA) Australia We Want report, released on Tuesday, provides a benchmark of how the nation and each state and territory is performing against values determined by 60… The values, which were outlined in detail in the first report on this topic in 2016, include just, fair, safe, inclusive, ... Read More »

Federal election 2019: Could these 15 ideas restore faith in politics?

Should Australia have fixed parliamentary terms? Or real-time disclosure of political donations? How about a “citizen jury” that can decide on issues of national importance? ABC News Breakfast By Patrick Wood These are just three of 15 ideas outlined in a new report aimed at improving our democracy, which has been pitched to our federal politicians this election. “Australia’s democracy … is frayed and public confidence in our system of governance is in worrying decline,” the Reforming Our Democracy report ... Read More »

The Human Rights Arts and Film Festival – 2019 Program Guide

Whether you love romance, want to be inspired or see something with all the feels, HRAFF Co-Founder and Chairperson, Evelyn Tadros has the perfect set of festival recommendations just for you! Published May 7, 2019 by Guest in Human Rights Arts & Film Festival Leave a comment Castan Centre The annual Human Rights Arts and Film Festival kicks off in just two days, and there are dozens of great films to see. Here’s a list to suit everyone’s tastes. For those of you who feel overwhelmed about ... Read More »

Nearly 2 out of 3 nursing homes are understaffed. These 10 charts explain why aged care is in crisis

The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety begins hearings on residential aged care facilities, or nursing homes, in Sydney today. Authors: The Conversation The standards of nursing homes in Australia have been in the public eye since the Oakden Aged Mental Health Care Service in Adelaide became embroiled in an elder abuse and neglect scandal, sparking reviews, inquiries and… This was the most prominent of a series of incidents of abuse and negligence that eventually led to the ... Read More »

Why are so few hate crimes prosecuted in Australia?

Imam Wadood Janud was just wrapping-up a vigil for the victims of the Christchurch shootings — a day after the massacre — when a ute smashed into the gate of his mosque in South Brisbane. Background Briefing By Hagar Cohen, Meryem Aydogan and Scott Mitchell, ABC “He shouted profanity and abuse,” Imam Janud told Background Briefing. “Then he rammed his ute twice at the gate.” Children, who had gathered on the lawn outside the Baitul Masroor Mosque, ran in every ... Read More »

Debbie Kilroy honoured with the Liberty Victoria Voltaire Award 2019

This year Liberty Victoria honours Debbie Kilroy, the founder of Sisters Inside, with the Voltaire Human Rights Award. The Voltaire Award honours a person or group for an outstanding contribution to or action on free speech, human rights or civil liberties, with particular emphasis on progressing freedom, respect, equality and dignity. It celebrates those who speak out, write, campaign, whistle-blow, take action or  stand against authoritarianism. Previous winners include Magda Szubanski, Gillian Triggs, Waleed Aly, David Marr, Peter Greste, Baher Mohamed and Mohamed Fahmy. ... Read More »

Federal election 2019: Australian Electoral Commission needs real powers to fight false claims

The Australian Electoral Commission says it is very keen to ensure that you are not misled during the current campaign to select our next Federal government. Paul Murray The West Australian So it is flooding social media with messages telling electors to be vigilant about misinformation as part of its Stop and Consider initiative. The problem is the commission also says it has absolutely no power to be a campaign umpire. “Under the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918, there are no ... Read More »

Why Assange and Ecuador Fell Out

Seven years ago, Julian Assange seemed at the height of his powers—a superstar information warrior behind the biggest leak in history—when he faced his first major legal blow. Dan Collyns NYR Daily He had lost a long fight against extradition to Sweden, where two women had accused him of rape. The possibilities for the rootless WikiLeaks founder, who was used to working from other people’s sofas and hotel rooms around the world, narrowed rapidly. Fearing that the Swedish investigation could ... Read More »

It’s time to vote for happiness and well-being, not mere economic growth. Here’s why:

As the federal election approaches, we’re expected to drown in slogans like “lower taxes”, “wage growth”, “franking credit reform” or “negative gearing reforms”. Authors: The Conversation These mostly assume voters are as obsessed as the politicians with economic and financial issues, rather than, say, the kind of Australia they want their grandchildren to live in. There’s no doubt we value a healthy economy and it can be argued Australia has enjoyed a “remarkable run” over the past 50 years. But ... Read More »

Is the Assange indictment a threat to the First Amendment?

A British court sentenced Julian Assange on May 1 to almost a year in prison for jumping bail. Ofer Raban The Conversation That’s not the end of Assange’s legal travails: he still faces the possibility of an extradition to the U.S. After a brief initial hearing, the matter will be taken up again at a hearing on May 30 in London. The American government has many reasons to dislike Assange, the co-founder of WikiLeaks, who is responsible for the dissemination ... Read More »

Julian Assange sentenced to 50 weeks

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was sentenced to 50 weeks in jail by a London court on May 1 for skipping bail to enter the Ecuadorean embassy where he was holed up for almost seven… LONDON- Reuters Hurriyet Judge Deborah Taylor read out the sentence as Assange, in a black jacket and grey sweatshirt, looked on. Taylor said Assange had exploited his privileged position to flout the law and express… He was convicted last month of skipping bail in June 2012 after an extradition order to Sweden over ... Read More »

Three months on from the medivac bill, refugee and journalist says ‘nothing has changed’

Iranian-Kurdish refugee and journalist Behrouz Boochani has criticised the federal government’s medivac bill three months after it came into effect, saying a list of sick refugees he… Hannah Barry The Age Speaking at Perth’s Curtin University’s fourth annual human rights lecture on Monday, Boochani delivered the keynote address via video link and spoke about colonialism’s impact on… Boochani spoke from Port Moresby, where he is temporarily based for an interview with United States officials, and said it was important for ... Read More »

Majority of voters want action on women’s issues, new polling shows

A majority of voters believe childcare should be a tax deductible expense, that many of our politicians are sexist, that women should comprise at least half of parliamentarians, and that the… Jacqueline Maley Brisbane Times The survey of 1065 voters, split almost evenly between men and women, commissioned by independent lobby group WomenVote and conducted by YouGov Galaxy, shows large… Seventy-one per cent believe the government should be doing more to address the gender pay gap, and 75 per cent ... Read More »

Family of Aboriginal woman who died in custody want coroner to consider ‘systemic racism’

If application accepted, Tanya Day’s case will be first time in Australia that systemic racism has been considered as a contributing factor to a death in custody Calla Wahlquist The Guardian The family of an Aboriginal woman who died in custody in Victoria have applied for the coroner to consider systemic racism as a factor in her death. If Victorian deputy state coroner Caitlin English accepts their application, it will be the first time in Australia that systemic racism has been considered ... Read More »

Migrants to the rescue of Victoria’s economy as housing slump digs in

Victoria’s population boom, with nearly 85,000 overseas migrants settling here in the 12 months to September 2018, is keeping the state’s economy out of trouble as the property market… Noel Towell The Age More than a third of Australia’s 240,000 overseas migrants last year made their way to Victoria, with most of the new arrivals settling in Melbourne and keeping the state’s economic engines… But there are worrying signs that the housing slump is eating away at consumer confidence, according ... Read More »

Access to justice and election agendas

With just three weeks to go, Lawyers Weekly has taken a look at what the major parties think of access to justice as a federal election issue. The Bar Grace Ormsby Lawyers Weekly Liberal Party According to the Liberal Party’s website, there is no consideration of the justice system specifically as an election policy. Despite this, the current government, now in caretaker mode until the election takes place, has cited the “combating of violence against women and children as remaining ... Read More »