1003

A forum on the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement will be presented in Sydney on April 8, and will be an opportunity to hear an open and informative discussion on peaceful non-violent resistance in Israel and Palestine. As the Australian media and politicians debate the effectiveness and legitimacy of the recent Sydney Biennale boycott, a cross section of speakers will offer their support to the global BDS movement — the Palestinian led campaign for justice, equality and peace for all in Israel and Palestine.
University students and staff protested proposed cuts to tertiary education in Sydney’s CBD on March 26. The event involved about 200 people from various faculties, who marched against the proposed $2.3 billion dollar cuts to their universities. Students from as far away as the University of Newcastle, gathered outside the University of Technology Sydney Broadway campus.
Stop Income Management in Playford released this statement on March 26. *** The number of income management clients in the city of Playford in northern Adelaide increased almost 700% over the second half of last year, according to data from the Department of Social Services. As of December 27, 495 people were on income management. The May 23 figure for Playford, seven months earlier, was 71 people.
"We'll win this, because we'll stick together", Barney Gardner, a long-time resident of the Millers Point public housing area in inner-city Sydney, told a rally of several hundred at Argyle Place on March 25. The rally heard a variety of speakers condemn the Barry O'Farrell NSW government for its decision to sell-off 293 public properties in the historic heartland of Sydney, following a march organised by the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) from the Kent Street Fire Station.
A new documentary film Radical Wollongong, produced by Green Left TV, will premiere in Wollongong in early May, followed by screenings in other cities and regional centres. The film features activist participants from Wollongong's radical history of strikes and community rallies, from miners’ struggles to Aboriginal justice and environmental protection. Co-producer John Rainford gives some background to the first coalminers associations, setting up Wollongong with its reputation as a city of militants. ***
After 1370 votes went missing during the Western Australian senate election last year, the vote was declared void. Another election has been called for April 5. The difference between this election and the last one is that the agenda of prime minister Tony Abbott is clearer. Anti-Abbott sentiment was particularly dramatic at the March in March rally, which drew 3000 people in Perth.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has defended Papua New Guinea's efforts to shut down at least two legal inquiries into the treatment of asylum seekers in the Manus Island detention centre, after the violence that left one man dead and scores injured. A PNG National Court judge, Justice David Cannings, announced early last month he would hold an independent inquiry into the conditions in the centre, and determine whether asylum seekers' human rights were being upheld under the country's constitution.
The parade of ALP politicians before the latest NSW corruption inquiry has given way to a cross-party merry-go-round. As the Independent Commission Against Corruption calls the tune, Liberal Party luminaries are now on the carousel. Liberal Senator and Assistant Treasurer, Arthur Sinodinos, has stood down from his ministerial position after being called to give evidence before the NSW corruption watchdog.
“We hope Christians will reflect on what it means to follow and worship a refugee God, and to stand in the tradition of a people who were sojourners and strangers in a foreign land,” said Matt Anslow, a Uniting Church member who participated in a prayer vigil protesting the detention of asylum seekers, in the electorate office of Scott Morrison. On March 21, this group of believers from Uniting, Anglican, Catholic, Hillsong and Anabaptist traditions walked into the office and invited the staff to join them praying for an end to mandatory detention.
Staff at Villawood detention centre denied Iranian and Afghan asylum seekers the right to celebrate Persian New Year’s, a festival that has been celebrated for more than 3000 years, over the weekend beginning on March 21. A group of 10 volunteers, including former inmates, were denied the right to take in food during the visit, which occurred during regular visiting hours.

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