Australia

The Mascot Towers debacle in inner-southern Sydney is a clear sign of the deep and many-sided housing crisis facing the city.

Residents in the 10-year-old, 122-apartment block were left without homes on June 14 after being evacuated due to widening cracks in the building's foundations. It has been alleged that the cracks could be related to impacts from the construction of a nearby apartment building.

The NSW Coalition government’s 2019 budget, handed down by Treasurer Dominic Perrottet on June 18, proposes to slash almost 3000 public service jobs over the next four years to fund its modest election promises.

The government has also vowed to continue its effective wage freeze by maintaining its 2.5% cap on public service wage rises.

Despite all the Coalition rhetoric about “balancing the budget”, the budget predicts government debt will rise to almost $39 billion over the next four years.

The Australian Electoral Commission’s final tally for the NSW Senate vote in the May 18 federal election shows the Socialist Alliance (SA) winning 6058 first preference vote. This is 12.5% higher than its 2016 tally (5385) and more than double its 2013 vote (2728).

Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) campaign coordinator Pas Forgione outlined why a campaign to “Raise the rate” of the Newstart unemployment benefit is desperately needed, at a June 15 community forum in Sydney’s west.

About 60 members of the Sudanese community and their supporters rallied on June 15 in solidarity with the democratic uprising in Sudan. The action was called by the Until We Return Cultural Group Australia.

The biggest and youngest and loudest abortion rights march for years was organised in Sydney on June 9.

Protesters outside the Downing Centre court in Sydney on May 31 denounced the prosecution of Stephen Langford for his “close the camps” graffiti. Langford, representing himself, was found guilty by Magistrate Julie Huber, who rejected the “duress” defence and ordered him to pay $2421.

More than 60 people gathered outside the electoral office of Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts Paul Fletcher in the northern Sydney suburb of Lindfield on June 11 to demand the federal Coalition government protect press freedom.

Up to 1000 people marched through the streets of Katoomba, in the Blue Mountains, on June 9 to oppose the NSW Coalition government's plan to raise the wall of the Warragamba Dam by 14 metres.

500 people gathered in King George Square to reaffirm opposition to the Adani mine in the wake of the federal election. The Queensland government is rushing headlong into fast tracking the mine which would be a climate pollution disaster.

The march proceeded into the Queen St Mall - where protest is basically prohibited - in a sign of preparedness to take whatever steps are necessary to end this mine and to avert a climate catastrophe.

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