Photo: NSW Education Action Network/Facebook. Students took to the streets on May 12, budget day, to call for free education and an end to the fee deregulation bill.
Macquarie University has suffered a setback in its courtroom battle against seven students associated with the Macquarie University Postgraduate Research Association (MUPRA). On May 7, the Supreme Court recommended mediation, which was agreed to by both parties. The university also agreed to release MUPRA funds for legal representation in a future mediation hearing. The mediation hearing is set by May 28, and the verdict will be released in a month, if a result is not reached through the mediation process beforehand.
Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy (RATE) has come under increasing attack at the same time as DeiCorp developers are advertising their proposed development with the tag line “"The Aboriginals have already moved out, now Redfern is the last virgin suburb close to city". RATE was established by Redfern residents as a protest against the proposed development on what is legally Aboriginal land of a block of commercial shops and student housing, by the Aboriginal Housing Company and developer DeiCorp.
Activists, students and academic staff met at the University of Sydney on April 29 to discuss the university’s recent attacks on those involved in a protest against a lecture given by an Israeli colonel on March 11.
The fight against the WA government’s widely unpopular decision to close a number of remote Aboriginal communities and force Aboriginal people off their land received a further boost this week with news that activists are set to converge on the state. The Grandmothers Against Removals, a group established to respond to the continued Stolen Generation enforced by the current and previous federal governments, will converge on Perth on May 26 to lend a hand in the fight against the closures.
As New South Wales is experiencing some of the strongest winds and rain in several years, the Redfern Tent Embassy is holding fast against strong winds and relentless rain. Redfern locals, and activists have banded together over the past few nights to keep the activist spot at the Block running. The embassy was erected in protest of the Aboriginal Housing Company’s plans to develop on the site , placing th cheap and affordable Aboriginal housing the Block has previously provided.
Two thousand people rallied in Federation Square on April 4 to oppose Reclaim Australia freely spreading racism and fascism on the streets of Melbourne. Anti-racist participants included socialists, anarchists, feminists, refugee rights advocates, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and the politically unaligned. All were united in a common cause to stop the spread of racism in Australia.
Associate Professor Jake Lynch, a member of Sydney Staff for Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS), was assaulted by an elderly Zionist woman during a demonstration in support of Palestine on March 11. The assault occurred at Sydney University, during a pro-Israel talk given by Colonel Richard Kemp, a former commander of the British forces in Afghanistan and supporter of Israel. Demonstrators interrupted Kemp’s talk, targeting his support for the Israeli occupation in Palestine, chanting “Richard Kemp, you can’t hide, you support genocide.”
After nearly four months of protesting, students have helped defeat the Higher Education Reform Bill for the second time. However, Education Minister Christopher Pyne has promised that he “won’t give up”, indicating that the bill will be put before the Senate once again, with further concessions to crossbenchers. Members of the NSW Education Action Network (EAN), locked themselves onto the door of the office of the Vice Chancellor of the University of Sydney, Micheal Spence, on March 16 to pressure him to come out against the bill. As it stands, Spence still supports the bill.
Land rights activists gathered outside the New South Wales Parliament — on the land of the Gaddigal people — today to protest against the closure and removal of services of remote Western Australian Aboriginal communities. Redfern Tent Embassy residents and activists, Greens MLC David Shoebridge and members of the Socialist Alliance came to show solidarity with communities which are facing permanent closure of their communities on which they have lived for many thousands of years.