Moreland City Council

Moreland City Council has agreed to a procurement policy which excludes dealings with companies dealing with coal corporations, writes Pip Hinman. 

Socialist councillor Sue Bolton writes that years of cut-backs and privatisations have made it hard for councils to rapidly put in place a COVID-19 public health response.

Far-right extremist Phillip Galea was convicted of planning a terrorist attack. His convinction is welcome, writes Sue Bolton, but others need to be brought to account.

A public debate has erupted over a decision by Moreland council, in Melbourne’s inner-north, to install armrests on benches outside Coburg Library.

Climate activists are planning a mass blockade of the upcoming International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC) in Melbourne, with the support of local councils, student unions and the Victorian Greens. 

Support for the Djab Wurrung Heritage Protection Embassy continues to grow, nearly a month after the Victorian Labor government gave Traditional Owners and supporters two weeks to vacate the protest camp site.

Extinction Rebellion activists continue to hold disruptive actions around Australia.

Socialist Alliance councillor Sue Bolton reported that on February 14 Moreland City Council in Victoria passed her motion calling for an increase in the Newstart allowance. This follows similar decisions by 10 South Australian local councils prompted by campaigners from the Anti-Poverty Network.

The motion called for Newstart to be increased to the Henderson poverty line. Newstart is currently $177 below the poverty line.

Local comedian Pauline Fartson (aka Helchild) summed up the sentiment of the Busk for Free Speech rally on August 6 when she held up a giant permit, which said “Permit to breathe in public places in Moreland”.

Busk for Free Speech was held to highlight some of the anti-democratic and discriminatory local laws being proposed by Moreland City Council as part of its review of local laws. Most of the proposed laws already exist under the current local laws but they are also being included in the draft general local law.

Many councils across Australia have local laws that restrict free speech. Most people are unaware of these laws, until there is an issue that engages them enough to want to exercise their right to free speech and set up a stall, hand out leaflets, get petitions signed and maybe organise a protest rally.

Only when a council officer tells them they have to pack up and leave, do they realise there are undemocratic laws on the books.

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