Unions have slammed plans to axe more than 2700 jobs from the NSW power industry this year. Publicly owned electricity network companies Ausgrid, Endeavour Energy and Essential Energy have revealed plans to cut 2749 jobs from September, offering staff just one week to consult on the proposal. The announcement follows the recent passage of legislation by the NSW government to privatise the power "poles and wires" network. The proposed job cuts are part of preparations for the sale of long-term leases for the three public power companies.
On July 4, hundreds of people rallied in Melbourne to "Let Greece Breathe." Protesters chanted "OXI"; meaning "NO" to the austerity cuts imposed by the banks on Greek people. Socialist Alliance Councillor, Sue Bolton, said "The Greek struggle is our struggle. A victory against austerity in Greece is important for the whole world." Photos by Ali Bakhtiarvandi.
"Another bloody bogan. Shows she can't manage her money", the Coles cashier said as Sally left the store. It was Sally's first time using the Basics Card, and things were not off to a good start.
President Rafael Correa called a rally on July 2 in defence of democracy and the pro-poor Citizens' Revolution his government leads after plans by the right-wing opposition for a violent coup were exposed. “We are ready to defend the revolution against the coup plotters,” Correa told thousands of supporters gathered outside the Presidential Palace on the evening of July 2. “We will remain firm in defending the revolution against the ultra-right.” he added.
The Communication Workers Union (CWU) has called for Australia Post (AP) CEO Ahmed Fahour to be sacked over his plans for 1900 job losses from the government-owned postal service. The call follows Fahour's statement on June 26 that AP would spend up to $190 million slashing employment in the agency in response to a declining volume of letter deliveries. AP employs 36,000 staff, with about 23,000 working in the mail service. Fahour claims the cuts follow losses in the mail delivery section totalling more than $1.5 billion in the last five years.
Across Africa, western Asia and Latin America in the 1980s, the growth of per capita GDP was brought to a halt. This was not a recession, it was a severe depression. And its cause was reckless lending by banks in the ’70s. A decade earlier, the euro currency had been invented. US dollars deposited in non-US banks and held there to avoid restrictions of US laws became negotiable financial instruments. These formed the basis for an unregulated market specialising in short-term loans.
The Bring Back Asha campaign continues to grow. A snap rally at Sydney Town Hall on June 30, hosted by the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, had 300 demonstrators making a sea of white balloons and placards, listening to speakers condemning the return of baby Asha (not her real name) and her parents to the immigration detention centre on Nauru.
The Aboriginal Medical Service Western Sydney (AMSWS) is an Aboriginal community-controlled health service based in Mt Druitt. The federal government has decided to stop its $4 million annual funding from July 1 this year, effectively forcing it to close down. AMSWS services the largest Aboriginal population in Australia. It has more than 11,000 active patients from greater Western Sydney and the Blue Mountains. Its closure will leave thousands of community members without access to essential services and put pressure on local hospital services and systems.
The ALBA bloc, comprised of 12 Latin American and Caribbean nations, expressed its support to Greece, as the Mediterranean country continues to renegotiate its debt with eurozone lenders. In a statement June 28, the bloc, which calls itself a “People’s Trade Treaty,” said it stands with the Greek people and the SYRIZA government against the "destructive consequences of neoliberal transnational capital," which regional organization said looks to subvert Greek democracy through financial measures.
Website blocking legislation aimed at curbing Australian's access to online piracy was passed by the senate on June 21. The Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Act 2015 allows copyright holders to seek a Federal Court injunction to block websites they deem to have copyright infringement as their "primary purpose". The bill passed with bipartisan support and was opposed by Senators Ricky Muir, Glenn Lazarus, David Leyonhjelm and the Greens. Greens Senator Scott Ludlam put a series of amendments to minimise the most drastic elements but these were voted down.