Chris McCoomb

The pandemic has thrown up many challenges for employers and employees, backpackers and farmers, writes Chris McCoomb.

The controversial issue of where to dump dredge spoil from the Abbot Point coal port expansion was the focus for hundreds of North Queenslanders who want to protect the Great Barrier Reef from the environmental impacts the dredging will cause. On October 19, boats and kayaks formed a flotilla at the beach as others rallied onshore. After progressing a couple of hundred metres, the flotilla and the marchers were surprised to be joined by a group of scuba divers who emerged from under the water and made their way to the beach to join the rally on land.
Prominent human rights advocate, Julian Burnside, QC, was scathing in his assessment of both the major parties and mainstream media’s approach to asylum seekers in a public address at the invitation of the Townsville branch of Amnesty International on Jun 14. Burnside told the audience that “both parties are trading in human misery in order to win or retain power” and mainstream media have to stop spreading the message that asylum seekers are illegal.
Townsville: Just a few weeks out from the Queensland state election, campaigns of various political parties are in full swing as the candidates attempt to persuade constituents to vote for them. The Queensland Council of Trade Unions (QCU) has joined the fray as it seeks to hold politicians to account by calling for candidates to commit to observing a charter that supports policies that benefit workers.
Organisers were stoked with an exceptional turnout for an anti-coal seam gas (CSG) rally that took place in Townsville on October 16 as part of the coordinated national day of action. More than 150 protesters marched from Victoria Bridge through town chanting slogans such as “Frack is whack” and “Lock the gate, before it’s too late”. The rally proceeded to Anzac Park where various speakers addressed the crowd. Gail Hamilton from the North Queensland Conservation Council said: “The people in Townsville are standing up and saying we don’t want CSG… It is not a safe energy option.”
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