Jim McIlroy

GLW author Jim McIlroy

Socialists make mark in Newcastle byelection

"We talked about the real issues that the ALP couldn't face up to and received a good hearing from local people," Steve O'Brien, Socialist Alliance candidate for the Newcastle byelection on October 25, told Green Left Weekly.

The byelection followed the forced resignation of Liberal MPs for the state seats of Newcastle and Charlestown, who were implicated in corruption scandals.

Rally protests Whitehaven Coal AGM

About 50 people rallied outside the Mint Bistro in Macquarie Street on October 28, carrying placards and black balloons marked CO2, to protest against Whitehaven Coal’s annual general meeting being held inside.

The protesters accused the company of ignoring the wishes of communities living near mining projects in the Leard National Forest and at Maules Creek in northern NSW.

Sydney rally says 'Hands off Medicare!'

"No GP Co-payment, Not Now, Not Ever! Hey Hockey, Hands Off Medicare!" was the theme of a rally organised by the Save Medicare Committee in Martin Place on October 23. More than 200 people attended the rally, which was followed by a march to state parliament.

Nadine Flood, national secretary of the Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU), told the crowd: “The next stage of the [federal] government's attack on our public health system is the plan to sell off Medicare. The government wants to move the work from the public to the private sector."

Flood said 6000 jobs were at risk.

Socialist candidate slams Newcastle rail cuts

Steve O'Brien, Socialist Alliance candidate for the byelection in the NSW state seat of Newcastle, slammed the NSW government’s decision to close the heavy rail line to Newcastle at Broadmeadow, cutting the city centre from rail traffic from December 26.

"This move is wrong and completely unacceptable for the people of Newcastle," O'Brien said.

O'Brien was speaking at the campaign launch at the Rail Sheds, Newcastle East Foreshore Park, on October 12. The by-election will be held on October 25.

CPSU ballots for industrial action in Dept of Human Services

The Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) on October 13 gained Fair Work Australia authorisation for a ballot of members on protected industrial action in support of a fairer agreement in the federal Department of Human Services. The electronic ballot will start in late October for the 15,000 CPSU members in Centrelink, Medicare and Child Support.

Patients to lose out from Medibank Private sale

"We are now in the world of 'big insurance,' with health funds squarely in the business of providing financial returns to shareholders ... Private health insurers serve their shareholders, meaning they don't necessarily seek to actively protect or advance models of care that result in the best health outcomes for members," chief executive of St Vincents Health Australia Toby Hall, Australia’s largest not-for-profit health-care organisation, wrote in the October 10 Sydney Morning Herald.

Millers Point residents protest auction sale

Residents and supporters of the Save Millers Point campaign protested outside the auction of another public housing property on October 8. About 30 protesters gathered outside Ray White Real Estate in Double Bay, holding placards and chanting, "Aristocrats, shame on you."

Sydney conference in solidarity with Venezuela

"Venezuela: The revolution continues," was the theme of a solidarity conference held at Redfern Town Hall here on October 6.

About 120 people attended the conference, which was organised by the Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, in conjunction with the Australia-Venezuela Solidarity Network (AVSN), the Bolivarian Circle, the Latin American Social Forum (LASF), other solidarity organisations, unions, and political groups, including Socialist Alliance.

'Save Medicare' march on Abbott's office

Several hundred people attended a rally and march to Prime Minister Tony Abbott's electoral office in Manly on September 20. The demands of the rally were: "No compromise — no GP co-payment; no cuts or privatisation; and free, public health care for all."

General secretary of the NSW Nurses and Midwives Association Brett Holmes said the GP co-payment would spell the end of equitable, universal health care under Medicare and it was time the federal government listened to the people it purported to represent.

NSW government hides funds from Millers Point sales

The NSW Coalition government is refusing to tell the community how it will spend millions of dollars gained from the sale of Millers Point public housing. Potentially hundreds of millions of dollars will be reaped if the sale of nearly 300 houses goes ahead. The government has received more than $11 million from the auction of the first four houses.

Syndicate content