Good economic management means taking care of our earth — not treating our most precious resources like a giant business in liquidation: ‘everything must go!’ The levels of pollution in our atmosphere mean business-as-usual will no longer work if we want to avoid dangerous climate change. The future for Australia can still be prosperous if we build our economy on green principles rather than short-term self-interest.
Grassroots participatory democracy
Real progress comes when enough people believe it is possible to make a difference and decide to do something about it. All Greens members and supporters are driven by the desire to work towards a better Australia. In contrast to the two old parties, which are run by executives in head office, The Greens involve members in key decisions and our campaigns are powered by thousands of ordinary people volunteering their time, skills and support.
Many of the social problems we have today — crime, discrimination, disease, poverty — could be dramatically improved if we focus on eliminating extreme inequality in Australia and across the world. The Greens believe it should be the priority of all governments to alleviate poverty and extend opportunity to all members of society.
Peace and non-violence
Australia’s foreign policy should be based on dialogue, diplomacy and cooperation, not aggression. Trying to prevent or counter violence with violence itself will not work. The Greens are committed to peaceful and non-violent solutions locally, nationally and internationally.
Re: Proposed changes to NSW Victims Support Scheme will deny victims-survivors access to vital supports
We are writing to raise significant concerns about proposed changes to the NSW Victims Support Scheme.
If implemented, the changes will deny many victims-survivors of violence in NSW access to support they have a right to and need. They do so by shifting the burden from Victims Services to victim-survivors to:
- Collect their own evidence of violence and injury before being able to submit a claim for victim’s support.
- Find an approved counsellor to help them in their recovery.
We are particularly concerned about the impact these changes will have on victims-survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and child sexual assault.
Every barrier put in a victim’s-survivor’s way will deter them from accessing support. Many victims-survivors forced to collect their own evidence within the strict timeframes set by the scheme or find their own counsellor will just give up due to the impact of complex trauma, literacy and language issues (including digital literacy), lack of access to a computer or the internet, and cost.
We are also deeply concerned by the lack of proper consultation with victims-survivors and their advocates on these changes.
Victims Services initially announced the changes on 20 April 2020, and they were due to come into effect just 5 days later from 5pm on 24 April 2020. In response to community concerns, implementation has been paused while Victims Services consults with stakeholders. We appreciate the Commissioner Victim’s Rights delaying implementation to consult. We remain concerned that the issues we are raising are not being adequately addressed.
The government must conduct a statutory review of the NSW Victims Support Scheme by May 2021.
It is our strong view that this review should start immediately, should involve proper consultation, and that any proposed changes to the scheme should be scrapped until after it reports.
Any reform should strengthen a system, not reduce or remove support for those who need it most. We do not understand the rationale for these changes or the urgency with which they are being
We urge you to write to the Attorney General and Minister for Domestic & Family Violence, the Hon Mark Speakman, and ask him to abandon these regressive reforms and commence the statutory review of the Victims Support Scheme immediately with proper consultation.
This letter was written by The Service Providers of the Shoalhaven advocating for Funding to Domestic Violence Services. As a local advocate for Domestic violence and as a Green’s member we must stand along with our coal face workers on the ground so they can support our women and children struggling in an environment of Domestic violence.
Thanks for your time in reading and support.
How many times have you driven past a development and said ‘What a terrible shame they cut down all the trees?!’Posted: May 25, 2020
IMPORTANT – Call to Action: How many times have you driven past a development and said ‘What a terrible shame they cut down all the trees?!’
Thoughts into action! We have to lodge a Rescission Motion to Governance regarding Taylors Lane, Cambewarra/Bomaderry.
This matter must not be ignored!! I just can’t stop thinking about the stress and wildlife loss.
Sign in favour of the rescission (pertaining to the loss of trees) along with me and many other very concerned residents.
Please help us by getting word out and making a lot of noise about it so we can turn this decision around and not be rushed into another unnecessary loss of trees and damage to local wildlife for an imaginary urgent timetable. This can be a win/win development with all the trees!
Write a short letter of how you feel about the issue. Show you care about this decision!
Write emails or a letter today and let ALL Councillors know how you feel about the losing 317 beautiful trees that could be so easily avoided with more thoughtful engineering and planning solutions for this subdivision!
Keep our Shoalhaven City Green. Thanking you all in advance.
PS Email to ALL COUNCILLORS IS:
All Councillors AllCouncillors@shoalhaven.nsw.gov.au
Taylors Lane – 317 Tree Demolition Plan
By Nina Digiglio
Shoalhaven City Councillor
There must be a better way with a balanced plan and outcome for both safety of residents and the Environment!
Residents of Taylors Lane have expressed concerns about the use of Taylors Lane for construction vehicle access to the Moss Vale Rd South Urban Release Area (URA). I am not against progress or development what I ask for is a balanced approach to having roads and housing that serves the community, but also preserves the natural environment as much as possible, and from my dealings with the community in this region their concerns are my concerns.
A strong collective community preference for Option 2 was put quite strongly at a meeting with council officers on 26 August 2019. Residents were unconvinced by Council arguments that Option 4, which is to remove all 317 trees with most trees being mature, healthy and irreplaceable.
Support for Option 2 will avoid destruction of most of the trees in Taylors Lane (mainly Spotted Gums). This was clearly the community’s preference at both a public meeting held last February 2019 and in the clear majority of submissions following the public display of the options in March 2020.
I have personally had a large number of representations on this issue and it just cannot be ignored, in fact I have a moral responsibility as a Councillor especially representing my constituents in Ward 1 to listen and explore opportunities for better outcomes for this community taking into consideration the concerns of the people that live there and those that value their environment.
As a Councillor, it’s imperative the community are heard regarding this issue. The Mayor and Greens Councillors voted unanimously for Option 2 along with the Labour Member. However, it is clear where the Shoalhaven Independents stand on this issue and it is very disappointing indeed. The community have had enough of tree lopping especially given our Black Summer where locals in Kangaroo Valley and Budgong in the ward 1 region are still recovering after the severe losses of homes, wildlife and trees. It is up to the community to flood their Councillors’ email boxes to express their views before Tuesday 26th May 2020 to reverse the decision and outcomes option 4 would bring!
Judge Baraitser – We urge you to DENY the extradition request of the Trump Administration.
Why is this so important?
ENDORSED by the National Lawyers Guild and Veterans for Peace ….
We are citizens of Australia, United States & UK who urge you to deny the extradition request of our government. If Julian Assange is delivered to the United States it will be a momentous setback for press freedom.
The correct decision is to NOT extradite Assange for the following reasons:
(1) The Extradition Treaty between the UK and USA prohibits extradition for a political offence. (Ref a) It says “extradition shall not be granted if the competent authority of the Requested State determines that the request was politically motivated.” The essence of Assange’s “crime” is that he published documents and videos which revealed the reality of US military and political actions.
(2) Assange would not get a fair trial in the US. He has been publicly prejudged by prominent political leaders. Secretary of State Pompeo declared Wikileaks is a “non-state hostile intelligence service.” (Ref b) Former Vice President Joe Biden has called Julian Assange a “hi-tech terrorist.” (Ref c)
(3) These charges would set a precedent where the US claims the right to seize a citizen of any country and to judge them by US laws without the rights of a US citizen. (Ref d)
(4) The US breached Assange’s right to client-lawyer confidentiality. During the last year at the Ecuadoran Embassy, a contractor for US authorities spied on Assange 24 hours a day, seven days a week, including during his private meetings with lawyers. (Ref e)
This case goes to the heart of the public’s right to know what is being done in their name. The information provided by whistleblower Chelsea Manning, and published by Assange’s Wikileaks, primarily concerned the US-led invasion and occupation of Iraq. Many people, including former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, say the invasion violated international law and breached the UN Charter. (Ref f) Yet there has been little or no accountability. Instead, US authorities seek to punish and imprison for life a journalist and publisher who dared to broadcast the actual consequences of this aggression, scenes such as shown in the video “Collateral Murder.” (Ref g)
The Trump administration seeks to criminalize what was previously considered a press freedom. Already the model of the Assange indictment has been copied by the Brazilian government in a criminal complaint against journalist Glenn Greenwald. A NY Times op-ed warned, “This blunt approach gives the government enormous leverage over journalists and, in the United States, provides them with a detour around First Amendment concerns. If these cases become templates that prosecutors in the United States and other nations follow, virtually every investigative reporter will become vulnerable to criminal charges and imprisonment.” (Ref h)
We are counting on British independence and justice.
Do not extradite Julian Assange to the United States!
How it will be delivered
By mail and email.
BIG Credit & Thanks to Americans for Assange – Rick S.
2020 was supposed to be the start of a new decade. A decade of hope and promise, a decade where change was imminent, but no- one expected the kind of change we have been handed collectively.
Reflections during the Pandemic. Given this situation humanity finds itself in what does it mean and what lessons can we extract from the experience to enable a better humanity to arise at this time?
A “Culture Shift” is staring at us in the face. Creating a culture of compassion, kindness, acceptance of differences, generosity and greater mutual international respect would be a calling worth pursuing at this time. What about the idea of just “Choosing to GIVE” Some of our most vulnerable on the planet, the Refugees, our African neighbours , our Indigenous peoples and those in war torn countries where much of the destruction have been caused by the first world ethos… Greed, Power, money and domination!
For too long we have watched these countries struggling yet, we persist in reducing our International financial obligation. We have the capacity to dispatch, health, education, construction, military and welfare personnel yet choose not to do it. We have wealthy churches who profess to follow Christ who keep the wealth within the church when they could choose to share the wealth out to these countries. It is a choice and we choose not to commit to share our wealth collectively. If the Pandemic helps us to make better choices by helping our fellow man then that would create a universal state of happiness joy and love would it not? As Ghandi said “THE BEST WAY TO FIND YOURSELF IS TO LOSE YOURSELF IN THE SERVICE OF OTHERS.”
ECONOMIC GENEROSITY How about instead of funding arms and weapons we ask better questions. Why can we not fund our most vulnerable? Why can’t we fund programs for better Housing, Education and the most glaring one at this time Health care? Here at home our Indigenous communities deserve more investment, care and resources to support their health, education and employment prospects. It’s a choice the Government just will not make, and that is to put our tax dollars to investing in our amazing Indigenous communities that enrich and colour our world with culture, spirituality, art, food and a culture, the oldest known and like nowhere else in the world!
Imagine being able to provide ALL of humanity with food so that NO one is left behind, so that no one is left to starve. This is possible. Again, it is about the choices Governments make to serve their own interests over the interest of humanity and the greater good. Angela Merkle is the only Leader who has taken refugees during the crisis and the only country to do their bit collectively to reduce the risk of Corona Virus within the refugee camps. She has welcomed over 1500 people stuck in refugee camps. If every first world country did this small act of kindness then the risk of the pandemic spreading to the camps would be reduced. Adding to this, investing in them would allow the goodness of humanity to surface and just maybe one of those people if educated and provided the opportunity like every child in the first world, perhaps they may be the ones to find the cure to many of our challenging diseases , find ways to manage waste and water more effectively or find better engineering solutions that are cost effective and sustainable. How exciting would that be for a world that works for all and not just for the few pulling the strings at the top!!!
SUSTAINABLE PROGRAMS & CLIMATE JUSTICE Investing in renewable, solar and battery storage projects will reduce carbon emissions and reduce the impact of our other impending environmental pandemic Climate Change! In Australia our climate has warmed to +1 degree heading quickly to +2 degrees since 1910. This has led to increase in the frequency of extreme heat events. Oceans around us have warmed to +1 Degree contributing to longer marine heat waves and increased acidity of the water causing untold damage to our marine life. There has been a decrease in rainfall impacting our farmers and food productivity and quality. Adding to this Australia has had the worst fire season in history and yet Governments still choose to invest in the fossil fuel industry. Again, it’s about choices Governments make in how money is directed. What if Governments truly invested in long term sustainable energy projects where the general public can save money on their power bills utilising our God given natural resources? Imagine how much cleaner our environment would be? Imagine how people will be able to use power guilt free without counting the cost. Imagine the long-term sustainable benefits for all people not just those that can afford it. This excites me and drives me into the political arena to speak about changing the old system that serves the privileged dare I say ‘OLD WHITE MAN’ world. For far too long they have chosen for me, many, many women and children on what they think we deserve.
We have never had a good say on what women and children truly deserve as we evolve and take our place in society. It is time for us women, ALL Women of differing colour and culture to speak up for themselves and their children to have a say in creating a better system where society is truly generous, kind and compassionate. A world free of male violence and misogyny. A world where women and children are valued just as much as men. A world where women are provided opportunities to use their talents and given the honour they deserve for their efforts. A world where children and our youth are provided with free education and health care without the stress of paying the Governments back who choose to give tax breaks to those that vote for them. A world where Governments listen to our young climate hero’s and action their requests. A world that has more meaning than how many houses or cars you have. A world where what matters are your values and how you made a difference to society. A world where kindness and compassion are the mainstays of our very existence. Call me a dreamer but I know I am not the only one!
HEALTH FOR ALL Now we have the Corona Virus pandemic on our hands it is timely to look at the health system, the way it is funded, how it is resourced and the outcomes it provides.
If health care is to be properly provided to all people, we need to really recognise the different types of people in society first.
We have the elderly, Children, People with a Disability, First nations people, vulnerable people who are homeless, refugee health , people with long term chronic diseases, people with poor health outcomes due to mental health or drug & alcohol addictions. Not one size fits all when it comes to health. Each person and group cohort requires differing needs and resources. The health system must recognise this and communicate to the Government what is required to produce outcomes that benefit each group, and Governments need to fund each cohort in such a way that quality of life outcomes is a guarantee. It’s not a numbers game based on data. It’s about the person, their story, their life and helping them get back on track or if they are at the end of life, are provided with the medication, staff and resources to ensure their dignity. It’s not about life at any cost. It’s about care, compassion, choices and dignity along the health journey. Sadly, what I have observed as a nurse for over 30 years is discrimination in the system especially toward our first nations people and our most vulnerable. Most of my colleagues are amazing humanitarians giving their heart and soul to their profession, but the nonsense of poor staffing levels, poor pay and putting up with outdated resources and equipment needs to stop. The Pandemic has taught us that investment in health and our hospitals is necessary and I must say the preparedness I have observed over the past few months is outstanding. The pressure this pandemic has put on the Government to provide the equipment and resources so that staff can effectively do their work has been unprecedented. The only thing left to do is pay the Nurses what they are worth not what the Government think they are worth, because saving lives is worth far more than a footy player can offer at times of crisis.. Just saying!!!
In Primary Health our Doctors and Nurses have sourced their own PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) from Bunnings… of all places at the start of the Pandemic. It took several weeks before the Governments put any real money in providing PPE to our Health workers. I can say now after speaking to my colleagues that there is a good amount of equipment for them now. Again, the pressure from the grassroots health professionals were able to influence the politicians to allocate money where it mattered. If they can do this now, then they can do it always. This pandemic has shown me that Health has a great deal of influence in fostering systemic change. I just hope that when the dust settles, we never go back to what was. I hope that the systemic rot, the cancerous political core will now listen to the people that matter most!!
By Nina Digiglio
Shoalhaven Nurse Consultant RN
Shoalhaven City Councillor
DREDGING AND CRUISING – BACK TO THE FUTURE with a nod to our old mate Pat
Big credit to NBT & Chris Grounds
Between 2014 and 2015 I ran a campaign against the Dredging Project of Shoalhaven City Council, then being steered by one Joanna Gash and her majority councillor band. Pat Thompson supported that campaign with critical front-page publicity in the Winter 2015 edition of the New Bush Telegraph.
I was first alerted to the risks when the children of a family we knew, who lived near the cruise boat terminal in Sydney, fell ill. This cluster was publicly linked to the flume from the cruise ships running their diesel engines on the lowest grade fuel while berthed and that smoke settling over nearby suburbs.
The cruise ship company? Carnival Cruises. The WWF had assessed the company as the ‘dirtiest’ such operation in the world just twelve months previously. The ‘bunker fuels’ used by cruise ships are known to causes asthma, heart disease, cancer, respiratory illness and premature death and are banned in the United States and Europe.
The next chapter developed locally with our Mayor of the time leading a charge with a “Shoalhaven Wide Dredging Project” funded with grant monies. Part of that were two community meetings at Huskisson both of which I attended. It was clear there were serious doubts about aspects of the Currambene Creek proposal.
What was also clear was that there was a curtain pulled over who exactly was responsible for the requests for this dredging. ‘Commercial operators’ was the best information in available at these meetings, the second actually facilitated by Jo Gash.
Subsequent investigations proved that a cruise ship company was behind the push. Which company? Carnival Cruises. There was a chronic reluctance to admit this within the Gash junta until Councillor Amanda Findley asked the question on the floor of council and the grenade exploded that evening with great drama. The answer – as you guessed – Carnival Cruises.
Carnival Cruises wanted to bring their passengers from a Jervis Bay offshore mooring, in their lifeboats, to Huskisson. A really sad aspect of this scenario was that the local tourism group knew of this and let their moral compass swing.
In a morale boosting twist of nature, the 2015 East Coast Low eroded more sand from the creek at the dredge site than the dredging would have done, and that plan had to be dropped. A similar result occurred at Sussex Inlet.
Now fast forward these five years to our Covid-19 crisis and which commercial operators are up to their collective necks in public health scandal? The cruise ship companies. One in particular – Carnival Cruises!
Carnival and other such companies perform on the basis of high debt, big dividends to shareholders and incorporation in the tax havens such as the Bahamas and Bermuda. In 2019 Carnival had $71million more in tax deductions over taxation owed on an income of $3,060million. Carnival have now announced they have suspended all cruises until May 15.
The most controversial ship in the fleet, in Australia and in Sydney, and now subject to a major police criminal investigation, the Ruby Princes, belongs to which company – Carnival Cruises.
Carnival Cruises emitted 10 times more cancer-causing gases in Europe than all of the continent’s passenger vehicles combined, according to data released on Wednesday this week. This is not the total health profile of Carnival. Passengers stuck on the cruise ships feel the companies have breached their duty of care in their handling of the Covid-19 outbreak and said they feel the ships are not even being properly cleaned. The cruise ship passengers seem to have been prepared to look past some major environmental concerns.
This is not the wisdom of hindsight. It should have been the wisdom of knowledge in 2015 under Jo Gash’s leadership.
Carnival are a leopard that hasn’t really changed its spots.
Big credit to NBT & Chris Grounds
|To ensure the health and safety of our Councillors, staff and community, Council Meetings will be conducted utilising video conference technology until further notice.|
Where possible, Councillors and staff will join remotely from their homes or other Council facilities, in order to comply with NSW Health’s recommendations for social distancing and self-isolation.Public viewing of Council Meetings (including Ordinary Meetings and Committees) is only possible via live stream, the link is available on Council’s website.
Need help to access the live or archived meetings, or Council meeting agendas and decisions? Contact Council’s Governance Unit on 4429 3111.
To request a deputation:The way we facilitate deputations has changed during this period. Following these simple steps will assist you in being able to have your point of view considered.
First, review the report and recommendations so you can advise whether you are making a deputation ‘for’ or ‘against’ the report recommendations. To find the item number and report name, link to Shoalhaven City Council’s Agendas & Minutes page.
Then secondly submit an application to make a deputation via the on-line application form Requests for deputations must be approved by the Chairperson of the meeting. Only one speaker for and against can address a meeting except in extenuating circumstances. Concerned residents are encouraged to appoint one speaker/representative to address the meeting on behalf of their group.
Thirdly, approved Deputations need to be submitted as a video (maximum length 5 minutes) and sent to firstname.lastname@example.org prior to 12.00pm on the day of the meeting. Alternatively, a written submission can be provided by email to email@example.com, this will be provided to all the Councillors.
** End **
|Issued by Communications Team|
(02) 4429 3339 | firstname.lastname@example.org
For all media releases visit www.shoalhaven.nsw.gov.au/My-Council/Media-releases
SHOALHAVEN INDEPENDENTS – RECKLESS WITH COUNCIL MONEY
Article by and credit to R Miller
On the 24th March watching the ordinary meeting from my computer at I home I witnessed a rushed motion, not listed on the agenda for a rate relief for this coming quarter for people of the Shoalhaven at a cost of $19 million.
On the surface this would seem to be the right thing to do in face of Drought, fire, flood and now Corona Virus.. but the devil is in the fine print of this rushed motion!
At this point Clr. Nina Digiglio asked question to the CEO Stephen Dunshea about the impact this would have on Council resources, staffing and budget? He could not answer this off the cuff but offered to bring a full report about the impact of this motion on council responsibilities. He stated he could prepare a report on this commencing the next working day so Councillors could see the state of play before rushing in passing a motion where $19 million dollars would be ripped from the budget.
On hearing this the Clr. John Levett suggested we amend the motion and ask for the report before making any decisions on the night so councillors could be across the details of the impact of such a decision. This motion was lost and was passed with the numbers of Shoalhaven Independents. The Federal and State Governments have already promised funds for people in hardship plus the Council can be approached to offer rate relief under the hardship policy.
The thing that stands out to me why employ a CEO whose expertise is in finance plus a strong finance team to back him, and you fail to seek his expertise before making such decisions. This in my opinion speaks of arrogance. Some questions I had were will this cost jobs for Council staff? How will council meet their commitments and obligations voted by the people on the Operations Plan to keep this city’s infrastructure updated?
The words of my father ring in my head, he was the CEO of a Clothing company that employed 20,000 people – ” FOOLS RUSH IN WHERE ANGELS FEAR TO TREAD!”
See council chambers in operation. Link – Full credit to SCC.