FUND NDIS PROPERLYAustralian disabled people deserve to not only have an insurance scheme that will assist them actively engage in the community and be supported with their disabilities, they don't need to be used as a political football by the Government for sake of politics. Its time big business gave something back to Australia!
NO HIGHRISE DEVELOPMENT ON THE SPIT!Even if ASF or any other company would pay a fair market price for the land (and we know this would NEVER happen!) the answer to their application SHOULD BE: NO! 1. If the SEAWAY/BROADWATER is meddled with in any shape or form the resulting effect on river tides/sand movement/silting/effect on the ecosystem is anyone's guess? WE CANNOT RISK IT! 2. We need the SPIT and all other open spaces on the Gold Coast to be preserved as our city is full of high-rises, we haven't got enough roads, our public transport system is basically non-existent, traffic is chocked throughout the city 24/7. 3. No development should be allowed north of Sea-World! We need the Spit developed as parkland and for recreation now and for future generations. 4. The Gold Coast, specially the central area where most high-rises are has no park with trees! Our greedy, self-serving council for decades has been selling anything/everything that could be sold... and the raping of the natural environment continues. This city NEEDS a decent large park, such as the Central Park in New York. Humans NEED OXYGEN TO SURVIVE which oxygen comes from TREES! No use to say that the Hinterland has enough trees and oxygen when the coastal winds blow it the other way, away from the coastal region where the high-rises and the biggest traffic exist. 5. ASF and all other companies should once and for all be given the thumbs down as far as the SPIT is concerned!
Stop the arms trade at Avalon Air ShowIs it wise to encourage our children to delight in our ability to harm others? An ability we should ideally use reluctantly, and as a last resort? Secondly, the international arms trade, which is larger and more corrupt than ever before, has become a scourge in other parts of the world. The flooding of the Middle East and Africa with weapons has contributed to the scale of armed violence there, with disastrous humanitarian consequences, as well as diverting funds from health and education, and restricting development. Our region has been largely spared this, except in the case of Papua New Guinea where tribal battles and criminal raids now use military assault weapons, making that country one of the most dangerous on earth. Should the rest of the Pacific go the same way?
SAVE THE LAVERTON LINK CENTRE FOR "KIDS AT RISK"The Link Centre is key in turning lives around for those kids who have struggled in our normal school system. These are bright, special kids who sadly have faced difficulties due to bullying, trauma, mental health issues or come from disadvantaged backgrounds. This program works. Centre Manager Rasheel Kaur said that out of 41 students enrolled last year, 38 per cent went on to do year 11, 33 per cent undertook vocational training programs and the rest returned for another round. Rhonda Collins, manager of Altona-based youth homelessness service Latitude, said it made no sense to close a centre with a proven track record. “It is the only alternative education setting that young people … have access to in the area” -“It’s a proven model, it has a high retention rate, young people have re-engaged back in to mainstream schools.” If we don't catch these kids at this vulnerable age there is a high probability they will never reach their full potential. It is crucial this centre stays open and continues it's important work.
STOP Proposed Mobile Phone Base Station at 9 Lomond Terrace, East BrisbaneBrisbane is undergoing a rapid expansion of mobile phone towers as carriers like Telstra, Optus and Vodafone attempt to offer better service coverage for mobile phone users. However, these carriers have both moral and legal responsibilities that should not be overlooked or de-priotised in the pursuit of business objectives or an owners personal gain at the expense of their street and community. It is our position that the Carriers have breached the Code by failing to sufficiently inform the community of the project and placing the consultation period over school holidays (both of which would naturally minimize negative feedback). Further to this, in the absence of information to the contrary, constructing such major infrastructure on a residential street is an additional breach of the code to minimise electromagnetic energy exposure, particularly where there appears to be multiple alternatives that the Optus and Vodafone do not appear to have considered.
Save ABC integrity and variety especially on RNWhere else can an Australian audience get the variety and depth of views and visions and above all the stimulation of such a range of ideas? Where else is there such a range of respected specialist journalists who cover everything from arts to science and religion to rock? Why is the ABC accused of left-wing bias when it shows opinions of all spectra and gives voice - although not as much as it could or should - to those who don't have access to commercial media. Why don't the Board and your minister develop pride in this unique and irreplaceable institution and those who work for it, instead of white-anting and undermining the amazingly talented a dedicated staff? There is no place for Information and enlightenment in the categories below but the ABC covers them all so I've ticked them all!
Save our Nambucca Heads Public Recreation Spaces from Residential DevelopmentWe object to this rezoning proposal for the following reasons: This precious tiny green space (0.87ha), that includes a natural water course supporting thousands of frogs, birds, echidnas and other native wildlife, currently zoned Public Recreation, and proposed for rezoning to Medium Density Housing is adjacent to 390,000 sq m of undeveloped land already zoned Residential. Surely, this space should be retained as Public Recreation or Environmental (E3). Note - It would probably be a superb site for a community garden! Koala's and Green & Golden Bell Frogs have been heard in the adjacent forested area, and kids for more than 3 generations have played in this space. As per Item 4. of the "Gateway Determination- Nambucca Amendment 21" Item 4 - we request/insist on a public hearing to address all our concerns and that of neighbours that are also affected by this rezoning. Please - Lets do this for our children, and their children! Who knows how much of our Public Recreation spaces will be lost to Residential development?
DUMP PLANS FOR SA's NUCLEAR HIGH LEVEL DUMPFukushima and Chernobyl taught the world that nuclear accidents are very expensive and toxic for generations and leave horrific tragedy in their wake. South Australian Jay Wetherill is currently pushing his Government's plans by using a publicly funded Education Campaign. He and his government are spending public funds to spin the ' it is all proven, scientific and safe' line in his current expensive roadshow. His goal is to place a global HIGH LEVEL NUCLEAR RUBBISH DUMP for short term profit in South Australia. He would like to place his own and South Australias' children's children's future at stake and just for money. Speculation and debate about long term finanncial cost / benefits of such an operation for a high level radioactive waste site is that it may prove to be a financial disaster. This is even if their is no nuclear leak, accident or clean up in tens, hundreds, or thousands of years time from today. If Mr Wetherill and the ALP of South Australia succeeded and any of the transported and stored waste containers EVER leak in an unforseen event or are accessed by wrong hands or motives it will prove potentially environmentally catastrophic. YES : SA needs smart new growth industries, not old outmoded nuclear plants spent nuclear waste in our back yard. NUCLEAR IS FOREVER Mr Wetherill- Just not here with toxic waste products please. Let the countries and wealthy energy company's that made the problem find other ways and places to deal with it. We understand their are companies involved in making large money from the real and pressing need to get rid of nuclear waste, it also asists with selling more nuclear power stations in future but we dont want that problem in our home state. As with Pangea back in the 90's the federal government met strong opposition and it stopped the project.. This is not a minor project of political short term consequence, this is a forever problem if your government succeeds in its wishes. DUMP THE DUMP
We call on ABC and SBS to break the silence on the climate emergencyPoliticians tell us they can't take climate emergency action to protect us all from climate impacts until the public demands it. Yet large sections of the public are lulled into thinking it can't be all that bad since neither politicians nor the media are reporting on climate impacts or discussing solutions. Our public broadcasters, ABC and SBS, might be the only body that is sufficiently trusted and powerful to break this impasse by reporting honestly and regularly about climate impacts and climate solutions. The public need to know about current and future impacts in order to be motivated to act, and need to know we have the solutions at our fingertips in order to take action themselves and demand government action instead of 'switching off'. Join us in calling for honest and thorough climate emergency reporting from the ABC and SBS. And when you have signed this petition, please also consider signing the Climate Emergency Declaration and Mobilisation petition at www.ClimateEmergencyDeclaration.org/sign » Read more on www.climatesafety.info/publicbroadcasters (main page) www.climatesafety.info/climateactionstalemate (article) and www.climatesafety.info/radiorelay (radio interviews)
Extend the proposed light rail beyond Hobart and MONAThe Brighton and Kingborough Municipal Councils are two of the fastest growing residential areas in the state and both lie within 30 kilometres of the Hobart CBD, with existing rail infrastructure already running from Bridgewater to Hobart. Given that this rail infrastructure already exists, it only makes sense to use this for passenger rail. It will ease stress on the Brooker Highway and Main Road running through Hobart's northern suburbs, parking space and congestion in Hobart's City Centre will be relieved, and stress on the Southern Outlet between Kingston and Hobart will also ease. Also, given that a light rail vehicle will run on electricity, Aurora and Transend will have an additional main client to supply electricity to and they can afford to lower the unit price of electricity to residents, especially those on lower incomes. Tasmania is also a self-sufficient supplier of hydroelectricity, a clean and renewable energy resource, that can reduce commuter dependence on petroleum-powered buses and cars. An extended light rail system is a good idea for safer and cleaner transport, the environment and commuters on lower and higher incomes.
Love Glebe? Worried about Westconnex building a freeway on Ross StWe are parents, families, kids and community members who love Glebe. We are very concerned that WestConnex Stage 3 will negatively impact on the local schools in Forest Lodge and Glebe by building an off ramp and exit along Ross St. WestConnex will bring over 36000 more cars to Ross St, dumping them in the Glebe area. We want to protect Glebe from a freeway that would cut the suburb in half and drench the community with fumes and pollution.
Equal Tax Payments for Equal Voice - The call for Religious Institutions to be equally Taxed.We are at a time, in our Australian society, where the Churches, and their respective lobby groups, still control governments and they pay no tax for this benefit. We, as the people, the voters, the constituents, have to pay tax, and therefore it is only fair under equal representation. This change is particularly relevant in todays society.
Restore funding for preventative Domestic Violence Services in the Tweed Shire.The current services require that a woman be homeless or at risk of homelessness to receive any specialist services. This leaves a considerable gap for women who need to, or choose to, stay at home while in abusive and violent relationships. These women caught in the cycle of abuse need access to services to assist them in dealing with their psychologically complex and frightening situations. They need a safe place where they can walk in and engage with specialist staff who understand what they are going through. Given society's increased awareness of the impact of abuse and violence on women and their families, it is unacceptable to abandon women and deprive them of access to these much needed services, which included counseling, education and mentoring in a culturally safe environment.
Make every playground in Australia inclusive20% of Australians have a disability. These members of our community, along with their families and friends, are excluded from the basic joy of visiting a public playground. Including people with disabilities does not cost more. It takes more time to consider the needs and think about access and inclusion at the planning stage; but the infrastructure does not cost more. We need you to help us to get the local governments across Australia to agree to legislate inclusion in all new playspaces. The only cost for this legislation is the exclusion of hundreds of thousands of Australians.
Love Glebe? Worried about Westconnex building a freeway on Ross StWe are parents, families, kids and community members. Our kids go to the local schools in Forest Lodge and Glebe and we are very concerned that WestConnex Stage 3 plans to build an off ramp and exit somewhere near Ross St in Glebe. WestConnex will bring over 33000 more cars to Ross St, dumping them in the Glebe area. We love Glebe. We want to protect it from a freeway that would cut the suburb in half and drench the community with fumes and pollution.
Save Rushcutters Bay open space? No new developments at Rushcutters Bay ParkThe proposed developments eg skateboard park is not in character with the park and will reduce the much needed open spaces from an already overcrowded area! Parking in the area is at a premium and we don't need more facilities being added that will not help local residents! Already there is a large established community that will be deprived eg fitness trainers ,picnickers,yoga classes, dog walkers etc
Support Youth facility at Rushcutters BayThis is a carefully thought out and well researched proposal, the result of 4 years of consultations and campaigning by the local youth community and their parents. The facility is aimed at 5-14 year olds and would be located in an under-utilised section of “no man’s land” within the park hemmed in by the canal, a line of trees and the outdoor gym. The park is very large — over 5.3ha — and the proposed concept would impact less than 2 per cent of this space. The proposal includes a basketball court, ping pong tables and new seating which would be used by younger children as well. The new facility will complement existing recreational activities. Currently there is no local place in Paddington or Woollahra where the children of this age group are encouraged to play outdoors, ie; to skateboard, cycle, chat in groups, climb trees, build cubbies or play handball or basketball. The population of children in the inner city has dramatically increased in the last 10 years and yet the presence of children in their local urban context is largely ignored by the planners and the adult community. In Paddington, all of the children live either in terrace houses with tiny courtyards or in units with no outdoor space, they are not allowed (by the schools) to play in the school grounds after hours, they are not supposed to play in the streets because it is considered dangerous. There are no parks in the area that cater for this age group. So the skaterkids are a marginalised and disengaged group within our community that do already play in the street because there is nowhere else to go. This youth facility will provide these much needed facilities for the Woollahra Paddington Community, in particular for an under represented and rapidly expanding population of 8-14 year olds.
Help kids with FAS-DThere is no cure for FASDs, but research shows that early intervention treatment services can improve a child's development. A seminal study by O’Connor et al (2006) found that protective factors that can help children with FAS-D reach their full potential include: a loving and nurturing environment, early diagnosis and involvement in special education and the provision of social services. We are finding it near impossible to get government help and support for social services and education.I believe it is important that schools get the appropriate funding and resources to support children with FAS-D. I would urge you to watch the 4 corners special on FAS-D, which can be accessed by the following link: http://www.abc.net.au/4corners/stories/2015/11/02/4341366.htm
Stop letting pedophiles walk our streetsPlease don't be offended, I'm a survivor of child sexual abuse, & at 51, I am in treatment to deal with the daily nightmares, I'm also in the process of having my perpetrator charged, but I'm scared! Because from what I'm seeing on a daily basis in the media, child sex offenders are walking out of courts with minimal to ZERO sentencing, it reeks of corruption! I would not have been a victim had the courts locked my perpetrator up the first time round! EVERY TIME CHILD ABUSERS WALK FREE, courts are re-victimising victims, they are retraumatising victims, they are saying 'kids lives don't matter' that victims are not worth their time! A good 90% of adults with mental health/substance abuse are living these lives because of some kind of childhood trauma in all its forms - imagine the reduction on the health system if we locked offenders up? Sending a clear message to these pedophiles that if you hurt a child, you will not see daylight again?? Or for AT LEAST 15yrs!
Stop the closure of Empire Street Early Learning CentreThe council made the decision to close the Empire Street Early Learning Centre in Footscray in a closed council meeting on 19 July 2016. This unconscionable decision will have a detrimental impact on current and future local families who use this valuable service for child care (with kindergarten teacher) and for check ups with the maternal and child health nurse. Centre staff are devastated at the news of the closure and redeployment for all staff to other centres still remains uncertain.This area of Footscray has a high density population and with developers gaining approval to build more apartment blocks, removal of such important community services is negligent. Please help the local community of Footscray keep Footscray a friendly suburb for families to live. Please read The Star's coverage of this important community issue: http://www.starweekly.com.au/news/shock-at-closure-of-childcare-centre-in-footscray/pub/maribyrnong_hobsons_bay/
Support Danish as an Australian communityDanish Khatta was born and lived in Australia with his parents since his birth on 27 April 2009. He never lived any where without his parents. He lived in Australian community all his life and going to school. He is well mixed up in Australian community. He can not live without his parents and siblings.
Kunannurra Hunger Striker Needs AnswersDaniel Taylor has been on a hunger strike for 14 days in protest of the privacy conditions of the cashless welfare card. The government has been ignoring him and the mainstream media are being typically biased. Please help Daniel get answers. For more info: http://www.activist-news.com/day-five-daniel-taylors-hunger-strike/ or https://www.facebook.com/WeStandWithDavid/?fref=ts
Save Our Hornsby Ku-ring-gai HospitalAccording to projections by GetUp, Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital could lose up to $221.4 million in federal funding over the next decade. This is roughly the equivalent of 133 hospital beds, or 247 nurses, or 139 doctors.* These cuts are the outcome of changes to Federal-State funding arrangements made in the 2014 budget, which saw $57 billion ripped from local hospitals over the next decade. The Turnbull Government's recent budget restored just $2.9 billion, locking in $54 billion of these cuts. Meanwhile the Coalition is trying to argue that they have increased health funding. These enormous funding cuts come at a time when the Australian Medical Association and Australian Nursing & Midwifery Federation are warning of an imminent crisis unless hospital funding is increased. They could mean fewer doctors, nurses, or beds, and longer emergency room and elective surgery wait times. But there's hope. In this critical pre-election period, polling shows that protecting our universal healthcare system is the number one vote-changing issue for Australians. The Coalition's attack on public health is clearly ringing alarm bells for voters, and we have a plan to turn the volume up. In the lead up to this year's Federal Election, people will step up in their local communities to call on their Federal MPs and local candidates to commit to adequately-funded hospitals. Together, we will lay the foundations for a strong and secure future where all Australians can receive the quality healthcare they need. *The funding loss projections per hospital are based on figures provided by the Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO) and hospital bed figures (2013) provided by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW). The projections are based on the full $57 billion cuts figure and represent our best estimate given the available data. For more information see: http://www.getup.org.au/hospital-funding
School uniforms = Gender discriminationI believe that gender discriminatory clothing is not appropriate in primary schools, or schools in general. I believe that if we want equality for the sexes then here is the best place to start. Why is it that the majority of school uniforms for girls is a dress or skirt? It's all very well encouraging kids to climb trees and explore their environment, but how is this possible in a dress? This is a subconscious message that girls need to keep two feet on the ground and knees together. How is this appropriate learning attire? Would shorts not be more appropriate for sitting cross legged on the floor, doing sport or climbing trees? Why is it that we assign gender at such a young age? Why do we force children into masculine and feminine roles before they are, in fact, men or women? While society has a lot to answer for with only pink tutus or army greens to choose from in clothing stores, this should not be the case in school uniforms. When I was at high school I hated wearing the netball skirt as our sports uniform. As a show of rebellion I and several other girls (followed later by a significant portion of the school) went home and made shorts from the tartan material that our school skirts were made of and wore those instead. Rather than encouraging this independent show of equality with the boys the school tried to ban it. Have we not moved forward from then? My friend's gender-creative daughter hates wearing dresses. She is about to start school and the uniform is the same dress that I wore to primary school 30 years ago. Should she be forced to wear the dress, to be told she can't have an education if she doesn't? Should she be able to wear her older brother's old uniform, but at the risk of her being bullied for being different? This would not be an issue if the uniform was the same for boys and girls. I would like a review of school uniform policy. I would like a single, gender neutral, school uniform worn by all students. I believe this is a nation wide issue and a relatively simple issue to fix. Thank you for your help on this matter.
We want safe bike lanes for 'school central' in Geelong's westBike riding gets kids active, improves their health, and teach kids about the community. It also takes cars off the road, which reduces road maintenance costs to rate payers, reduces traffic stress, limits pollution and slows climate change.
Sustainable Funding for ABA Helpline.This morning Senator Nash the Assistant Federal Health Minister announced the ABA Helpline would be funded for another year. To keep staff and for planning the helpline needs certainty. In 2007 the Parliamentary Inquiry recommended that the 24 hour helpline which is used by thousands of women each year be funded. Women from the city and rural areas can telephone a trained counselor for the cost of a local call. Many women leave hospital, often early before breastfeeding is established and require support. Volunteer, trained ABA counselors answer calls twenty-four seven and are a cost effective resource replied upon by health facilities. Every mother on discharge from hospital receives the infant blue book with the ABA helpline number on the cover.
Let Asha StayImmigration detention harms children. There is overwhelming medical evidence to support this. We can and must protect baby Asha from further physical, emotional and psychological harm. As a person seeking asylum she is in the care of the Commonwealth of Australia. The PM has the power (and we believe the moral courage) to show compassion towards baby Asha and family, and let them stay. Background: Love Makes A Way have made a request to the PM's office to present him with the #LetAshaStay banner signed by over 1000+ concerned Australians who have been part of a rolling vigil since Friday 12 Feb in support of medical staff at the Lady Cilento Children Hospital in Brisbane refusing to discharge baby Asha until a safe home environment is assured. The overwhelming support for baby Asha has meant that we have run out of room on the banner! This online petition is a way to take the banner online and allow more people to show support for her. Thank you for signing and sharing.
Support Urgently Needed Services For MenI currently support men on a daily basis, often 16-18 hours a day and entirely unfunded. There is not one cent to be found for support services for men which fits their needs while navigating relationship breakdown and the family separation process that befalls them. If we want better outcomes for Australian children, we need strong, resilient men who have readjusted to the new situation they have found themselves in. Currently, they are routinely so battered and bruised by a process that is systematically destroying them, that they give up hope and walk away - or worse. Australia must care for it's men and fathers so they can be present to help raise healthy and well adjusted children. We must care for them so they can move on with their lives into new healthier relationships. Failure to do this sees them falling victim to the mentality of our government, which routinely ignores the important role of men and fathers in Australian society.
Don't Close Hampden Rd ArtarmonThe decision to run the cable up the main street of Artarmon Village is poorly conceived and ill-advised. A fully functioning Hampden Road is essential for providing local access to Artarmon Public School and Royal North Shore Hospital. Prolonged partial closure of Hampden Rd will severely affect parking and traffic flow and force closure of businesses in the Artarmon shopping strip. Concurrent development in Hampden Road and at the school means that 2016 is the worst possible time to be considering this project.
#LetThemStay, Allowing the 267 refugees to remain on Australian soilChildren are most affected by offshore processing, experiencing trauma that often haunts them well after leaving. Reports dictate they openly discuss self-harm and suicide, with many attempting at very young ages. Nauru is no place to raise or even educate a child. Serious rape and sexual abuse allegations have been brought against guards and locals, none of which have been investigated. Women are afraid to travel to the toilet and allow their children to attend local schools, at which beatings frequently occur. It is imperative that they be transferred to Australia after a rapid processing of claims, so that the correct medical and social support can be administered.
Rally Round The Banner Of Umina - We Want The Bunnies To Play This Season..The club have acquired old and new sponsors this year and are looking STRONGER then EVER. To be removed from the competition not only causes undue suffering for the PLAYERS and club MANAGEMENT, but also for the COMMUNITY members and organisations that the club are supporting and working with this year. It hinders the partnerships planned between the seniors and juniors of the UBRLFC as well as the Netball Bunnies. The SPONSORS that have committed to the club also miss out, as their signage is not displayed at games or during functions. The clubhouse renovations will have to be put on hold and the other community NETWORKS and PROGRAMS will be a very slow progress forward if the Bunnies are placed into recession.
Save the Aboriginal Butterfly CaveAn important Awabakal women’s place – The Butterfly Cave – is at real and immediate risk of damage from a subdivision being built 20m/65ft away. It's contextual bushland setting will be destroyed. If we lose the Butterfly Cave it will be an environmental and cultural tragedy. We have witnessed the destruction of too many precious sites in bush and city Australia. The desecration must stop and it must stop NOW. Women's business matters!
Stop the Health Insurance Amendment (Safety Net) Bill 2015Please help! Proposed changes to the Medicare Safety Net for IVF will raise costs to about $10,000-15,000 a treatment. For most of us, that's an impossible sum. We wouldn't have our Mischa today and I know many of you out there have friends as well who now have beautiful families through IVF help. Please sign this petition and click on links and spend a few minutes to register your thoughts by NOVEMBER 30th, 2015: http://monashivf.com/proposed-ivf-funding-cuts/
No Business In Abuse: Port Adelaide EnfieldCorporations are paid billions to do the government's dirty work in offshore detention camps – but they rely on other income streams as well, including contracts with local councils all around Australia. Our local councils need to refuse to contract with these corporations until they stop profiting from abuse. Australia’s system of mandatory detention, particularly in offshore detention camps, has consistently proven to be abusive and violate fundamental human rights. But the same corporations that make a profit providing essential services to these cruel camps also maintain business relationships with local councils across Australia. No respectable institution should associate with corporations complicit in such a system of abuse. Broadspectrum and its security subcontractor, Wilson Security, are contracted to provide services central to the operation of Australia's offshore detention camps in Manus Island and Nauru. Together they have been paid billions for their work in the camps - the sites of gross and ongoing human rights violations, physical, psychological and sexual abuse. In a recent report, No Business in Abuse established Broadspectrum and its subcontractor’s complicity in abuses violating 47 international laws. Broadspectrum’s own records indicate that since 2012 there has been a major or critical incident of self-harm reported on average every four days and a serious incident of sexual assault reported on average every four months, in the Nauru camp alone. These are the same corporations that hold lucrative contracts with local councils across Australia. Tens of thousands of Australians have pledged not to associate ourselves with corporations that profit from abusive practices towards people seeking asylum in Australia. We believe that every individual, every corporation and every institution has a responsibility to respect human rights. Our local councils are important institutions in our communities, and should take this responsibility seriously - to lead by example in encouraging responsible business practices and adherence to human rights. You can read the full text of the No Business In Abuse Report here: https://www.nobusinessinabuse.org/site/about
Fund Siblings AustraliaI am Kate Strohm, and I am the Founder and Director of Siblings Australia, and I have been fighting for support for siblings for many years. In Australia, there are several hundred thousand siblings of people with severe or profound disability, or other chronic conditions. Most siblings enjoy a mutually close, loving relationship with their brother or sister with disability. However, siblings can grow up with considerable stress, but without the emotional and intellectual maturity to cope with those stresses. Adult siblings talk about early feelings of isolation and confusion, grief, guilt and excessive responsibility. This can lead to a range of mental and physical health problems. Siblings also have the longest relationship of anyone with the person with disability and, if supported, can contribute much to their brother or sister’s social and emotional wellbeing. Many, as adults, are struggling to ensure a good life for their brother or sister whilst trying to create their own life. But, often reflecting their experiences in their own families, siblings struggle to speak out about their needs. Various national agencies have highlighted the needs of siblings. The Australian Institute for Family Studies report from 2008, ‘The nature and impact of caring for family members with a disability in Australia’, highlighted the increased risk of siblings experiencing depression. And the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists stated in 2011: ‘Siblings of children with disability or chronic illness are at risk for behavioural, mental and physical health problems…..there remains a lack of coordinated activities and national action to support this group of at risk children.’ They provided a number of recommendations which were endorsed by many agencies around Australia and passed onto government, but these were totally ignored. Regrettably, siblings are not recognised anywhere in government policy or programs. It is a huge gap. Whilst millions of dollars are spent on parent/carer programs (as it should be), siblings continue to be overlooked. And Siblings Australia, the only national organisation that has a focus on siblings, cannot access funding. I grew up with a sister who had cerebral palsy (both physical and intellectual disability), which had a profound impact on me. As part of the process of working through this as an adult I wrote a book on siblings in which I interviewed a number of siblings and made contact with overseas sibling support programs. With the help of Child Psychiatrist, Dr Jon Jureidini, this led in 1999 to the establishment of Siblings Australia, and since then, the organisation http://siblingsaustralia.org.au/ has developed a national and international reputation for its work with families, providers and researchers. Regrettably, in late 2007, a federal election was called before our contract for the following year had been signed, and we could not access further funding from the new government. Our office was closed and staff released. For the last 8 years we have been functioning in a restricted way mainly through my voluntary efforts with the support of a Board of management. I have continued to advocate at a national level for siblings to be recognised and supported, through various submissions and direct approaches to government. At the same time we continue to hear about the huge need for sibling support, from both siblings and parents. There remains a lack of understanding of the issues for siblings and their particular needs. Existing programs are not always appropriate for siblings. They need their own services, tailored to their very specific needs, which change significantly over a lifetime. We want governments to understand that sibling support benefits not only the sibling but also their family and, most importantly, the person with disability. It also benefits the community and government. With adequate support, siblings will be healthier and less reliant on social and medical services. Preventative support approaches are vital. In addition, support increases the likelihood that siblings will remain active in the life of their brother or sister with disability. Many people with disability, especially with intellectual disability, become isolated. It's complex, but anyone with an interest in people with disability should pay attention to siblings. Without funding, there is a risk that the experience and expertise gathered by Siblings Australia will be lost. Siblings are too important to ignore. They need a voice. Sign this petition if you too believe that siblings are important and worthy of support. Thank you
Support for Parents/Carers of severely Autistic childrenMy little boy has Severe Autism, he is the 1 in 10,000 but is seen as the 1 in 100 by the relevant departments - this is unacceptable, unrealistic and irresponsible in terms of his care needs. Families like my own should not, and must not, be expected to wait for the NDIS roll out expected to happen next year. Children like my son should not need to be voluntarily placed into Foster Care by their biological parents simply because Foster Parents are given the support needed to care for their child, while the biological parents are ignored in their pleas for help year after year, month after month. #HOPEFORCHANGE
University of Newcastle: Stop supporting abuseOpen letter to Professor Caroline McMillen, Vice-Chancellor, University of Newcastle Dear Professor McMillen, We the undersigned are deeply troubled to hear of the University of Newcastle’s (UON’s) decision to award a five-year contract valued at $88 million to Transfield Services, as it places the University in a highly contentious, and we believe untenable, position. Transfield Services will now be the head contractor for the delivery of UON’s infrastructure and facilities management and maintenance. Transfield is also the lead company contracted to manage and operate Australia's offshore detention camps. That these centres are sites of gross and ongoing human rights violations and physical, psychological and sexual abuse of vulnerable people seeking asylum has been well documented, including by a recent Senate enquiry, and by the ‘No Business in Abuse’ group, amongst others. As staff and students of UON, alumni and concerned members of the community, we believe that Transfield Services cannot be dissociated from its activities in offshore detention centres. It is our position that, by awarding this significant contract to Transfield Services, UON is, however unwittingly, providing a level of implicit endorsement for the company and all of its activities, including those in offshore detention camps. We therefore call on UON to lawfully terminate this contract, and seek an alternative contractor(s) to provide these services. We further call on UON to adopt the No Business in Abuse pledge, the text of which can be found in full here, www.nobusinessinabuse.org, and which would commit UON to engage only with companies, institutions and organisations that refuse to support or profit from abusive practices towards people seeking asylum. We trust that this letter is received in the intended spirit, to minimise and repair the reputational damage done to the University, and to advance a new direction that could see UON leading the sector in areas of ethical policy and practice.
Save Angas Recreation ParkThis is important because this small park is the best park within our small town. It is widely used all year. There is a huge swell of opposition to this plan from one woman who says it is the only place she can let her autistic son run free to the dog walkers who come from all over the Barossa to let their dogs run. Well over half an acre of land would be fenced off and made unavailable to ordinary people simply to please a small bowls club, Subsidising a private club whilst the council claim to have no money for footpaths and other issues of local importance is utter nonsense.
Indoor Community Play Area for BHAR ResidentsIt is important to all residents at BHAR to have a safe environment for our little ones to play. Away from dirt, dust, heat and most importantly, for safety and hygiene. Our children deserve to grow and play in a socially acceptable environment, hassle-free. We ask that you consider our proposal favorably and help us to fast track the development of this indoor play area by April 2016. We, the undersigned, call on Beverly Hills Al Rayyan (Al Asmakh) management to support and approve our proposed vision of building an indoor play space (with age-appropriate equipment and facilities) for our close-knit community here at Beverly Hills Al Rayyan.
Stop the private long day care development in BlackheathOur local community does not need this development. Our area is already well serviced by other local, not-for-profit community-based preschool and long day care services. For-profit childcare facilities put profits before children, operating on the lowest costs, least qualified and lowest amount of staff they can get away with. We don't believe the care and education of our children should be privatised for profit. The bowling green site is currently zoned recreation, located next to Blackheath Oval, gym, basketball and tennis courts. It was up until recently, used by the Blue Mountains Croquet Club. The site should remain as a recreational facility as intended by the zoning.
Let my child watch 'Gayby Baby' in school hoursMy daughter's school in Leichhardt, NSW was one of around 50 schools in Australia that had organised to screen the Gayby Baby movie - as part of national Wear it Purple day, a campaign for the inclusion of diverse genders and sexualities in schools. I was over the moon that my daughter would have the opportunity to watch this film along with her schoolmates, some of whom themselves are gay, lesbian or bisexual or have same-sex parents. It was a great chance for the kids to discuss the content of the film together in an open and accepting way. But on Wednesday, NSW Education Minister Adrian Piccoli sent a memo to every NSW principal BANNING them from showing this documentary during class time. Since when does the Education Minister intervene to ban a movie? This is deeply upsetting, and so very disappointing. Minister Piccoli has gone too far. The NSW Department of Education guidelines on film screenings do not prohibit showing films with homosexual themes and advise that films with an M+ rating can be shown at the discretion of the principal. Gayby Baby has been rated PG. Gayby is a documentary about kids growing up, in this case in a same-sex family. It's a real gift for kids to have the opportunity to watch a film told from kids' perspectives, and gives them a chance to openly discuss what it means to be a family. For Mr Piccoli to ban the screening of this film during class time sends a terrible message to the kids of today. Piccoli's ban is a unacceptable statement that this government doesn't want our kids learning about same-sex families, at least not on their watch. I want my two children to grow up in an Australia where they, their friends, and family members can be proud of who they are, regardless of their sexuality or gender identity. The Gayby Baby documentary teaches kids that there is more than one way to make a family and fundamentally teaches us to be open, accepting and loving towards each other. What could be more educational than that?
YOUNGER SIBLINGS MUST BE GIVEN PRIORITY FOR ADMISSION BEFORE NEW ADMISSIONSSchools in the West Victoria are experiencing high volume of enrollment applications. Families with older sibling in a school are being told that it's not school priority to have younger siblings attend the same school over the new families living in the catchment area. Families who have had long associations with the school, and children who have built friendships and trust with the school are being forced to leave by the exclusion of younger siblings. We support the changes that need to occur to control school numbers but solutions must take into account the welfare of existing pupils and their families. Please respect our children's and families need to be able to attend the same primary school. Don't force families into a position where they have to withdraw their children from the school they love in the middle of their schooling.
SAVE WEST EPPING PRESCHOOL INCHornsby Shire Council is looking to increase the rent for West Epping Pre-school to market rate. This will lead to a substantial increase in the current school fees and/or selling off the community preschool to private operators, which will mean the loss of an affordable preschool option for the local community. West Epping Pre-school (“WEPS”) is the local community not-for profit preschool and has been operating in its current premise for over 55 years. Over 10,000 local students have transitioned successfully through our preschool to local primary schools. WEPS has provided and continues to provide a very unique early childhood education program to our local community and many local parents have chosen and continue to choose to send their children to WEPS because: - We are one of the only few early childhood providers in the Epping area who is NOT a long day care provider. - A community preschool is a more financially affordable option for parents who cannot afford expensive long day care facilities. (For example, it is an affordable option for parents who are not eligible for Child Care Benefit rebate). - WEPS provides a high quality preschool program (rated “exceeding” in all 7 quality areas of the National Quality Standard) - WEPS has played an integral role in the local community for over 55 years and helps create healthy interactive communities in the Epping area even before families enter kindergarten in the local primary schools - We have a very committed team of staff with 15 years of service as an average across all employees. With the recent high density developments and rezoning in the Epping area (which will see approximately 8500 new residential dwelling in the local Epping area) as well as the predicted increase in local population, it is clear that there will be an increase in the demand for early childhood education. Hornsby Shire Council should be looking at adding more early childhood education options for the local community, but not at the expense of existing preschools already satisfying a need in the community. It is the local council’s responsibility to serve the needs of its local community. And Hornsby Shire council should serve their communities by assisting in the provision of facilities and early childhood education to its constituents. If you want to support the survival of West Epping Pre-School and ensure that Epping continues to have a wide range of options for early childhood education, please sign this petition by Sunday 9 August 2015 and share through social media (eg Facebook) with like-minded community members.
NEVER AGAIN IN AUSTRALIA: FOR ME, YOU AND OUR CHILDREN - STOP THE ADLER LEVER ACTION SHOTGUNWe, the people of Australia entrust the lawmakers to do all within their power to ensure that public safety is prioritised above ALL other considerations. This can only be achieved by tight regulation of gun ownership. Responsible firearm usage is to be ensured for ALL the people of Australia. The Adler shotgun has a 7 shot tube magazine. A magazine is an ammunition storage and feeding device within or attached to a firearm. This means it can shoot 7 or more cartridges in just 7 or more seconds – similar to a pump action shotgun. It is the kind of weapon that was highly restricted after the Port Arthur massacre; yet by anomaly, it can be purchased easily as it is a Category A weapon. It must be a Category C (and thus tightly restricted). We, the people of Australia, remember the victims of massacres at places Hoddle St, Monash University, Port Arthur and Martin Place. NEVER AGAIN. We urge people to stop the Adler shotgun and to support legislation in each state to achieve this. Right now, the NSW parliament has a Bill from Greens MP David Shoebridge called the Firearms Amendment (Lever Action Shotguns—Community Safety) Bill. We want you to support it, and to support any bill like it in other states of Australia. We urge everyone to support legislation to Carol Loughton BM Mother of Sarah Kate (deceased) murdered at Port Arthur 1996
We want the Archway 1 Theatre Company & Arts Studio to stay in the Bicentennial Park Arches.!The community have been incredibly supportive and very excited for the existence of a theatre space & arts studio under the Archways, in the Park lands. The Archway 1 Theatre Company and Art Studio have been inundated with offers from local residents to help, insisting that we remain in the same location and continue what we do, because it is a great concept that is much needed for the community park and we have a great track record of providing a service to our community, with FREE art classes for adults and children, FREE Drama classes, Poetry in the park, Free Dog portraits, Pancake breakfasts in addition to our art exhibitions and theatre plays. The community have expressed to us directly that they feel our arts space and art studio fulfill a need for them. A well managed arts space that compliments the park and is accessible to the community. The benefits of providing a space for parents and their children for example, who frequent that particular area of the park daily, due to its proximity to the children's playground, cannot be overlooked. Dog walkers alike, have found our initiative to be a welcomed addition to their daily enjoyment of the park. Cyclists have also expressed gratitude at the convenience of being able to literally pull up on their bikes and grab a coffee. For the culturally and artistically inclined, we offer something unique to the existing surrounding sporting fields and natural surrounds. Our theatre productions have a local following, with supporters who have endorsed the merits in the work we do. We have been a part of the Sydney Fringe Festival two years in a row. We source many local actors, directors and crew to work on productions and we provide space for artist talks, film nights, rehearsals, exhibitions, fashion shows, photo and film shoots. Our arts space is an additional destination for light rail commuters, tourists or visitors to the area, as a place of interest along their inner west journey, alighting at the Jubilee Park Oval. We are also considered a reassuring safe haven, for people exercising or walking dogs late at night in the park, as we are open late for theatre rehearsals or artist talks. Supportive comments include; "We have been waiting twenty years for this to happen!" "Thank God you're here!" "WOW, just WOW! This is amazing and reminds me of New York." "I wish I knew you were here, when my kids were at school, they're all grown up now." "I am so HAPPY, HAPPY, HAPPY and excited that you are here!" (82 year old local resident- Patty) "It's about time you guys did this here!" "OMG! This is exactly what I thought should be here." "I normally never visit this part of the park, but now I do." "This is awesome!" "Hey, this is great! Reminds me of Europe." "So glad you guys are here! We are going to come and see some theatre." "Finally, good coffee!" "I am going to tell all the mother and parent groups you guys are here." "I'm going to mention you guys in the local school newsletter." "I can't believe I can walk out my door and down to the park, to watch theatre and have a coffee."