As the embers cooled in the debris of US President Donald Trump’s 59 Tomahawk missiles fired at Syria, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull ordered an immigration crackdown that includes a new US-style patriot test for those seeking Australian citizenship and the scrapping of 457 foreign worker visas.
US President Donald Trump sent his vice-president Mike Pence on a beat-the-drums-of-war Asia-Pacific tour and even before Pence got to Australia, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull started talking Trumplish.
He regurgitated Trump's jingoistic riffs with near word-for-word precision: “Australia and Australians first”, “Australian values”.
Since US President Donald Trump’s inauguration, there has been a spike in commentary about the increasing risk of a war in our region — a war that could involve the US and China. As things stand, it would be impossible for Australia to avoid involvement in such a war. That is a reality we must urgently confront.
Staff at stationery chain Kikki.K will be the first employees covered by an enterprise agreement to directly face cuts as a result of the Fair Work Commission’s decision to cut weekend penalty rates.
The 550 Kikki.K workers are covered by a new enterprise agreement approved last month.
It has a clause that allows it to cut public holiday and Sunday penalty rates without any opportunity to renegotiate when the FWC's cuts to the retail award come into effect.
The deal was struck without the involvement of any union or employee bargaining representatives.
On April 19, the first anniversary of the tragic death of Josh Park-Fing at his Work for the Dole site in Toowoomba, the Australian Unemployed Workers' Union held rallies in Sydney and Melbourne to demand Justice For Josh and that the dangerous, discriminatory and exploitative Work for the Dole and Community Development Program be shut down.
An emergency protest organised by Sydney Stop the War Coalition, held as the US Vice President Mike Pence arrived in Sydney on April 21, drew a range of networks concerned about old and new — possibly — nuclear wars.
Palestinian cook and writer Laila El-Haddad recently completed a successful Australian tour. Weaving stories of Palestinian life through her demonstrations of a cuisine that is unfamiliar to many Australians, Laila showed curious foodies how food, culture, resistance and occupation intersect and what it is like to live through such a heady mix.
The federal government announced on April 13 the Emissions Reduction Fund had spent another $133 million on carbon emissions abatement.
This included about $100 million on planting trees to save the equivalent of 8.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions.
At the same time the states permit land clearing and deforestation that emits millions of tonnes of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere and is responsible for 8% of Australia’s emissions.
US President Donald Trump’s threat to unleash a new nuclear war should not be dismissed as the ravings of an unhinged individual. He may be that, but he has also shown that he is prepared to start a new war and ratchet up old ones.
The US’s missile attack on a Syrian government air base on April 7 and its decision to drop an 11-ton GBU-43/B (or MOAB, Mother Of All Bombs), the world’s biggest non-nuclear bomb, on Afghanistan on April 13 is proof of that.
French Guiana, in South America, and the French West Indies, in the Caribbean, could join the anti-imperialist Bolivarian Alliance for the People’s of Our America (ALBA), if left-wing candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon were to win France’s presidential election.
ALBA was founded by Venezuela and Cuba in 2004 as an alternative to neoliberal free trade agreements, and now includes 11 Latin American and Caribbean nations.
The South Australian Racing Minister Leon Bignell has called on the state’s horseracing authority to ban jumps racing after five-year-old Wheeler Fortune was euthanised on April 15 after falling during the Somerled Hurdle race in Oakbank.
Bignell called on Thoroughbred Racing SA to act, labelling jumps racing “cruel and “barbaric”. But the controlling body said jumps racing was an “integral part” of the sport and would continue.
KFC, Pizza Hut, Carls Jr and Starbucks workers wenton strike across new Zealand on April 22 after negotiations broke down over a new collective agreement.
“Yesterday Restaurant Brands announced profits of $26 million and they have paid their CEO a million dollar bonus. Tomorrow the workers who actually make and sell their products have to go on strike to get a few cents above the minimum wage” said Unite National Secretary Gerard Hehir said on April 21.
Friends of Victoria University released this statement on April 19.
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Victoria University is planning to fundamentally change the structure of its workforce and radically alter the type of education that students receive.
Up to 115 academic staff will be sacked and replaced by 65 entry-level academic staff (Academic Teaching Scholars). These staff will have increased teaching hours and inferior retrenchment provisions so that they can be easily sacked should there be future cuts at VU.
Unions representing care and support workers are pleased to be jointly announcing with government a proposed equal pay settlement to 55,000 workers across the aged residential, disability and home support sectors.
The proposed settlement is a huge win and will make a real difference in valuing the work of care and support workers and the people they support, workers in the sector say. It is a significant step in addressing gender inequality in New Zealand.
About 150 people joined an emergency protest in Melbourne on April 17 telling the government to bring the refugees on Manus Island and Nauru to Australia.
The protest came after sailors from the Papua New Guinea navy fired shots into the detention centre and locals attacked refugees.
Workers at Fletcher Insulation in Melbourne's south-eastern suburbs have been on indefinite strike since February 17 after being offered an Enterprise Agreement (EA) that would slash conditions, raise serious safety concerns and offer no pay rise.
Fletcher Insulation produces heat, fire and sound insulation for residential and business properties. New Zealand-owned Fletcher took over the Dandenong factory from ACI Glass several years ago.