Australian News

Activists vow to blockade Metgasco at Bentley — again

Gas company Metgasco is so determined to drill for unconventional gas in northern NSW it is prepared to make enemies of old friends — the NSW Coalition government.

On September 1, Metgasco declared it was halting talks with the Baird government and suing it for damages.

Redfern Tent Embassy succeeds in fight for Aboriginal housing

BREAKING NEWS: Aunty Jenny Munro announced on August 31 that the Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy had forced the hand of the Aboriginal Housing Company to sign a commitment to guarantee that housing for Aboriginal families will be built as a part of the redevelopment of The Block. The signing is due for September 1, 2015.

MUA wins another round in Hutchison Ports fight

The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) and Hutchison Ports management agreed on August 28 to sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU), which will result in all sacked workers at Port Botany and Port of Brisbane being reinstated for a further six weeks from August 31.

Record attendance for Bersih 4.0 protest in Perth

Well over 1000 people attended the Bersih 4.0 rally in Perth on August 29. This was more than double the number who attended Bersih 3.0 in Perth in 2012.

Tram and rail industrial action steps up

An emotional and highly charged stopwork meeting of hundreds of tram workers jammed into Trades Hall on August 27 to hear a report on their dispute with Yarra Trams.

Yarra Trams and Metro Rail workers had called off a planned four-hour strike on August 21 in the hope that the companies would present the Rail Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) with a better offer. The better offer never came so the tram workers struck for four hours on August 27. This was the first tram strike since 1997.

‘Anzac Day terror plot’ charges dropped

On August 25 the Melbourne Magistrates Court dropped terrorism charges against 18-year-old Harun Causevic, who had spent 120 days in maximum security solitary confinement for the alleged “Anzac Day terror plot”.

In April more than 200 police were deployed to arrest five Melbourne teenagers. The mainstream media unquestionably repeated police allegations about the plot, allowing politicians to talk and act as if its existence were an established reality.

People power: Melbourne forces Border Force backdown

A plan to swamp Melbourne’s CBD with Australian Border Force officials, police and transport officers to check the visa status of “any individual we cross paths with” was cancelled before it began following sustained criticism of the operation from politicians, unions, Melbourne city council, human rights lawyers and the people of Victoria.

How to get active

BRISBANE

Come to a rally to save penalty rates on Saturday September 5 at 11am. Capalaba Sports Club, 113 Ney Rd, Capalaba. Organised by United Voice Queensland and supported by QCU.

MELBOURNE

Green Left Radio relaunched

Early this year supporters of Green Left Weekly in Melbourne decided to relaunch the Green Left Radio show on community radio 3CR. This was after urging from station management and Green Left supporters volunteering at the station.

The Green Left Radio program previously aired on 3CR between the mid-1990s and early 2000s.

Rally targets China ‘free trade’ agreement

More than 800 workers gathered in Bicentennial Park on August 23 to protest against the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement in a rally organised by the Electrical Trades Union (ETU).

ETU National Secretary Allen Hicks told the crowd Chinese companies need invest only 15% in a project worth at least $150 million to be able to bring in workers from overseas who are not subject to labour market testing.

For as little as $22.5 million, a Chinese investor in a joint venture with an Australian company can avoid paying Australian wages and conditions.

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