World refugee numbers increasing

Con Karavias More than 2 million people fleeing wars or persecution have been added to the ranks of the world’s refugees in 2017, according to a report presented to the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR). The largest increases come from South Sudan (650,000), and Muslim Rohingya (500,000) forced to flee ethnic cleansing in Myanmar over the past five weeks. “[Refugees] often arrive sick, traumatised and...CONTINUE READING

Manus Island refugee protests continue

Liam Ward Refugees in the Manus Island detention centre stopped protesting on Monday, 2 October, after having marched and chanted in the tropical sun for 62 days continuously. But they weren’t celebrating victory or suffering a decisive defeat. For one day, they paused to mourn the death of one of their own. Earlier that day, Rajeev Rajendran, a 32-year-old Tamil refugee, was found dead – yet another death at the han...CONTINUE READING

School expulsions report highlights plight of disadvantaged youth

James Crafti “Every year several hundred children are expelled from government schools [in Victoria] … A disproportionate number of expelled children have a disability, are in out of home care, or identify as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander. Some come from backgrounds of significant trauma. Some are only five or six years old.” The opening lines of Victorian ombudsman Deborah Glass’ report into government school e...CONTINUE READING

Anti-racist protest dwarfs fascist rally in Melbourne

Simon Barrett The chant “You’ll always lose in Melbourne!” echoed in the streets of Melbourne on 17 September as another pick and mix of assorted fascists, Nazis and white supremacists was vastly outnumbered by a loud counter-rally. Between 400 and 500 anti-fascist protesters gathered at the State Library for speeches and chants. Indigenous activists, speakers from the Rohingya community, Jews Against Fascism and longsta...CONTINUE READING

Campus security targets student activism at Sydney University

Hersha Kadkol A concerning new precedent has been set for how university managements can deal with student activism. Students from the Education Action Group (EAG) have been organising to support staff at the University of Sydney, who are fighting attacks on pay and working conditions. The EAG created large posters to inform students about the strike, which has been organised by the National Tertiary Education Union (NTE...CONTINUE READING

Griffith University restructures a disaster for students and staff

Priya De Griffith University has introduced sweeping restructuring this year, with more to come. The changes are an attempt to boost profits at the expense of education quality and accessibility. Without student consultation, and ignoring staff concerns, management implemented a trimester system in February. In this model, a third academic period is squeezed into the year by condensing term lengths and cutting holid...CONTINUE READING

A desperate plea for help from Nauru

We have waited long enough! We have a right to be free and to know our future! We were tricked into being transferred to Nauru from Christmas Island, promised that we would be freed quickly if we followed the rules. Those who remained on Christmas Island are now in Australia. Some of us have children, brothers, sisters, husbands, wives and family in Australia. Our families are heartbroken and devastated fro...CONTINUE READING

CFMEU speaks up for marriage equality

This union has been at the centre of more progressive movements than Malcolm Turnbull’s butler could poke a stick at. These were not just struggles in the workplace. They were struggles that made our society more equal and more fair. You might want to tell us to stick to our “bread and butter” – to winning you better wages and conditions at work. But here’s the thing about that: a better, fairer Australia w...CONTINUE READING

NUS education conference debates way forward

Emma Norton Hundreds of students from around Australia recently attended the annual National Union of Students (NUS) education conference, which this year was held in Brisbane. The conference, in the first week of July, debated the direction of the student movement. Many of these discussions related to the Make Education Free Again campaign, run by NUS this year. Other important questions for the left were also raised:...CONTINUE READING