Alex Bainbridge

The NSW Labor government has launched a broadside attack against Aboriginal magistrate Pat O’Shane in the lead-up to the March 24 state elections.

The third anniversary of the death of Aboriginal teenager TJ Hickey will be on February 14. TJ was impaled on a metal fence while being chased by Redfern police. Had police followed proper medical practices, it is likely that TJ would have survived.

December 14 marked the 100th day since the unfair dismissal of Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) construction division delegate Barry Hemsworth from his job at Botany Cranes. The managers used the federal government’s new anti-union laws to sack Hemsworth for the purported crime of “insubordination” — in fact because he was defending the occupational health and safety standards at the company.

Protest actions were held around Australia on November 17 as part of the “Chavez not Bush!” international week of solidarity with Venezuela. The actions called opposed US interference in Venezuela’s December 3 presidential election. In Sydney (pictured), 40 people picketing the US consulate were addressed by Keysar Trad from the Islamic Friendship Association, and Kiraz Janicke and Marce Cameron from the Australia-Venezuela Solidarity Network. Trad spoke strongly in favour of Venezuela’s right to self-determination and pointed to Iraq and Afghanistan as disastrous examples of the US government’s failure to respect this principle.

Around 200 people attended Green Left Weekly solidarity fiesta on November 4 and helped raise $2700 for the newspaper’s fighting fund. The event featured greetings from sacked Botany Cranes delegate Barry Hemsworth, who is campaigning for reinstatement, and a passionate statement of support for the Socialist Alliance by NSW upper house candidate Jakalene X-treme. Cuban band Cafesur kept the dance floor alive until late. Upcoming GLW fundraisers in Sydney include a harbour cruise on December 9 and a raffle for a spectacular Christmas hamper. Phone (02) 9690 1977 if you can help.

“I want to switch the lights on. I want people to see that there is a chance for a change.” This is how Aboriginal rap artist and social justice campaigner Jakalene X-treme describes what she wants to get out of the Socialist Alliance campaign for the March 2007 NSW state election. Jakalene was selected as an upper house candidate at the Socialist Alliance state conference on October 7.

A hunger strike will be held on October 20-21 in the Parramatta Activist Centre in solidarity with the “death fast resistance” that has been carried out by Turkish political prisoners since October 20, 2000.

“Ain’t that the truth”, said the Socialist Alliance’s lead upper house candidate in next March’s NSW state election, Susan Price. “And it sums up why we’re running against them.”

David Llewellyn faced a barrage of criticism and no-confidence motions over his handling of the health portfolio when Tasmania’s parliament resumed on August 23.

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