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With 44 seats (to the LNPs 42) and the support of Independent Peter Wellington, the ALP leader Annastacia Palaszczuk was sworn in as Premier on February 14. The full Cabinet of 14 (including 8 women) was sworn in on February 16. The ALP minority government represents a number of firsts for Queensland: first cabinet with a majority of women ministers; first female team of Premier and Deputy Premier (Jacki Trad); and first woman indigenous cabinet minister Leeanne Enoch. It is assumed that the axing of asset sales will be the first item on the new government’s to-do list.
“The ABC is trying to destroy Tony Abbott,” reads the first line of Andrew Bolt's whistle-blowing expose, entitled “Bias against Tony Abbott is truly sickening”, that was published in several Murdoch tabloids on February 19. And I suppose that's what these overpaid ABC bludgers living off our hard-earned tax dollars have the gall to call a “job”! Destroying Tony Abbott? I've had more taxing naps.
The largest US refinery workers strike since 1980 entered its third week, TeleSUR English said on February 18, with union and oil company representatives set to renew face-to-face talks over pay and safety after a week-long hiatus. The article said: “The United Steelworkers Union (USW) is seeking a three-year, industry-wide pact that would protect 30,000 workers at 63 U.S. refineries, covering up to two-thirds of the country's domestic oil producing capacity.
50 Shades of Grey Directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson Starring Dakota Johnson & Jamie Dornan Based on the novel by EL James In cinemas now Perhaps the most concerning thing about 50 Shades of Grey is not that it is a film adaptation of a novel that was written in an online forum — and a Twilight fan forum at that.
Hundreds of people started a week-long walk through Sydney’s western suburbs on February 21 to highlight the risk coal seam gas poses to drinking water. Beginning at Cataract Dam the route will continue for 160 kilometres through Camden, Campbelltown, Liverpool, Fairfield, Prospect, Parramatta, Auburn, Ryde and Gladesville before finishing at Parliament House in Sydney. More than 10 community groups came together to organise the walk, including the Western Sydney Environment Network, Stop CSG Macarthur, Parramatta Climate Action Network and the Nature Conservation Council of NSW.
Several hundred residents and supporters of the campaign to stop the NSW government's WestConnex tollway project gathered in Whites Creek Park, Annandale, on February 15. Cait Jones, a representative of the campaign which successfully stopped the similar East-West Link tollroad in Melbourne, said: "In Victoria, we beat the East-West Link. We're here today to stand with you in your fight against WestConnex. Mass transit is what we want and need. Tollroads are a disincentive to public transport.”
The Redfern tent embassy in Sydney has received an eviction notice from the Aboriginal Housing Company. It claims the owners of the tent embassy do not have “permission to be on this site” and are “trespassing”. The tent embassy was set up in May last year to stop land being taken from the Block and redeveloped for commercial space and private housing. READ MORE: Redfern Tent Embassy remains strong
Pressure is mounting on Australia’s big four banks over their support for the construction of coalmines in Queensland’s Galilee Basin. Greenpeace launched a public email campaign targeting the executives of ANZ, Commonwealth, NAB and Westpac, “to publicly rule out financing or advising Adani [Mining] on the Carmichael coal mine and associated infrastructure project in the Great Barrier Reef or Queensland”.
Unions NSW has launched a "NSW Not For Sale" campaign in the lead-up to the March 28 state elections. The campaign targets the state government's plans to privatise the power industry, as well as attacking private involvement in hospitals and TAFE. The campaign involves TV advertisements, as well as a radio and digital blitz. It aims to mobilise union members and other volunteers for doorknocking and mass telephoning.

The National Union of Students organises national days of action, in which students around the country take part in rallies to fight back against the latest round of attacks against public education. This year, students are continuing to fight the biggest attack on accessible education since HECS was introduced in 1989.

The Refugee Convention and similar international laws exist to protect the world’s most vulnerable and persecuted people. People who flee war zones or are victimised by their governments and communities rely on countries that are signatories to these conventions to recognise their at-risk status and provide safety.

Fires were still smouldering on the morning of February 17 as emergency crews assessed the damage after a train carrying Bakken crude oil derailed and exploded near the Mt Carbon area of Fayette County, West Virginia, the day before. About 2400 people have been evacuated or displaced by the derailment, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, as the fire burned power lines.