Sunday, 23 October 2016

Greens Newtown MP Condemns WestConnex Arrests

Reports that Police have arrested three residents taking part in nonviolent direct action at Holmwood St in Newtown today are cause for serious concern for our community.

Member for Newtown and spokesperson on WestConnex, Jenny Leong MP, says that people have a right to engage in peaceful protest.

"Local residents were peacefully protesting at the site when contractors shamefully built a fence around them. It's not the first time we've seen dodgy tactics like this used by private contractors doing the Baird-Grant government's dirty business," she said.

Saturday, 22 October 2016

Stop the Baird-Grant Land Clearing Laws - Video

Stop the Baird-Grant Land Clearing Laws - Video

Nearly 29 million busy signals for people trying to reach Centrelink last financial year

The number of calls to Centrelink that hit a busy signal has ballooned out to nearly 29 million for 2015-16, up from 22 million the previous year.

"In addition call waiting times on the main program phone lines remains high causing further frustration.

“I have been tracking this growing problem for some time and every estimates the numbers seem to continually climb.

Reef progress still Miles away: water quality Report Card

"Today's report card is a fail on Reef water quality, after this year's earlier fail on climate with 22% of corals dead from the Reef's worst ever coral bleaching," said Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens Deputy Leader and environment spokesperson.

"The Queensland and federal governments have flunked in improving the water quality of the Reef - there has been effectively zero improvement since last year.

CSIRO to face questions in Estimates on new report about potentially corrupting fracking industry influence

The Australian Greens will question the CSIRO in Senate Estimates today over revelations in the report released today<> revealing potential conflicts of interest relating to crucial climate, environmental and social research within the CSIRO's industry-funded Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance (GISERA).

Bellingen Shire Electricity Alliance Workshop Nov 4

Greens introduce bill to ban new coal mines to save the climate

The Greens have introduced the Mining Amendment (Climate Protection - No New Coal Mines) Bill 2016 into the NSW Legislative Council.  The bill puts the issue of coal and its impact on the climate firmly on the NSW Parliament’s agenda and, if enacted, would prohibit the approval of any new coal mines or coal mine expansions. 
This is the first time a bill to ban all new coal mines has been introduced into an Australian Parliament.  Currently there are applications for an additional 1.8 billion tonnes of new coal mining in NSW.

“For too long governments have made excuses while the coal industry rapidly expanded.  For the sake of the climate we must deal with coal and the first step is to ban new coal mines and mine expansions, and then to implement a transition strategy to shift from coal to renewable energy and diversify regional economies,” said Greens energy and resources spokesperson Jeremy Buckingham.

Friday, 21 October 2016

Is brunching to blame for the housing crisis?

"The Murdoch press has encouraged young people to eat fewer brunches to save for a house. How condescending and unhelpful.

Rich investors have driven up house prices and young people are already spending less on food.

We need real solutions to affordability, not moralising from conservative commentators."

Senator Lee Rhiannon

Greens MP Objects to Hanson Comparison

Today in NSW Parliament, during a debate on public housing, the National's Member for Myall Lakes Stephen Bromhead implied The Greens were "a lot like Pauline Hanson and the One Nation Party".

Member for Newtown Jenny Leong MP says that the comparison was nothing short of insulting.

Shark Watch not shark nets

Greens MP for Ballina, Tamara Smith today welcomed the efforts of local group Shark Watch NSW to set up a volunteer surveillance service to help protect swimmers and surfers at Ballina's beaches.

"I fully support this local solution to a very complex problem affecting Ballina's residents. Shark Watch is well organised and committed to providing a shark spotting service using volunteers and drones," said Ms Smith.

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Leyonhjelm’s horse trading on ABCC reveals his craven opportunism

Greens spokesperson for gun control Senator Lee Rhiannon has commented on reports that Senator Leyonhjelm is seeking to pressure the Turnbull government into relaxing national gun laws, in exchange for his support of the ABCC.

‘There should not be horse trading on these bills. It is so important that we do not let our stringent gun laws slip away by bartering over bills like this.

Planned move would gut Pesticides Agency of organisational knowledge

With nearly three-quarters of scientists at the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) saying they are not willing to move from Canberra to Barnaby Joyce's electorate of New England, the Greens have called on the government to ditch the plan.

"The Agriculture Minister's proposal has been a prime example of a failure of consultation with staff, stakeholders and the community in general," said the Australian Greens Agriculture spokesperson Senator Janet Rice.

Clear majority support free vote for marriage equality

"Australians are sending a strong message that they want politicians to do their jobs and have free vote in the Parliament," said the Australian Greens LGBTIQ spokesperson Senator Janet Rice.

"We're not going to achieve this long overdue reform by retreating to our party allegiances. We must work together to create a cross-party bill.

"Last week, the Greens sent a letter to party leaders urging we all work together on marriage equality. It is disappointing that we have not yet had a response from either Mr Turnbull or Mr Shorten."

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Government needs to address hearing loss for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander kids: Greens

Widespread hearing loss amongst Aboriginal kids in Northern Territory should be urgently resolved with increased funding that closes the gap in hearing health, Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert said today. 

“Unaddressed hearing loss in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities is entrenching disadvantage and worsening life outcomes for those effected. This has been known for a long time yet Governments have failed to act, despite a Senate committee report in 2010 on the issue.

Attorney-General Questions Still Unanswered

The Attorney-General's attempt today to justify his conduct was thoroughly unconvincing, Australian Greens Justice spokesperson Nick McKim says.

"He is relying on a semantic defence to the charge of misleading parliament which leaves significant questions unanswered."

"The Solicitor-General, who gave calm and considered evidence in the face of oafish intimidation from Senators MacDonald and O'Sullivan, made it clear that he regards the Legal Services Direction issued by Senator Brandis as unlawful."

Government confirms $20 million immigration jail being built on PNG

The Federal government has today confirmed it is spending $20 million building a new immigration jail in Papua New Guinea to open by the end of next year.

"The Australian government is spending millions of dollars on new offshore jails, all the while claiming that their policies are working," Greens Immigration spokesperson Senator Nick McKim says.

PM’s office did not take advice on Macfarlane appointment - Ministerial Standards trashed

The Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet has confirmed in Senate estimates today that the Prime Minister’s office did not ask for advice on former minister Ian Macfarlane’s appointment as CEO of the Queensland Resources Council.

Senator Lee Rhiannon, Greens democracy spokesperson, has called on Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to disclose the involvement of his office in the Macfarlane appointment.

Amnesty International's Damning Assessment of Nauru

Amnesty International's comprehensive report of the Nauru detention centre paints a damning picture of the human cost of  indefinite detention and Australia's flagrant breaches of the Refugee Convention.

"The Island of Despair report tells the world what we have long known - that Australia is flouting the Refugee Convention and deliberately subjecting the men, women and children we are responsible for to terrible harm," Greens Immigration spokesperson Senator Nick McKim said.

"This is a damning indictment on the current government - and the Labor Party for setting up offshore detention - and adds to Australia's enduring national shame."

Greyhound Racing Industry Already Backtracking From Animal Welfare Promises

Dr Faruqi
Greens NSW MP and Animal Welfare Spokesperson, Dr Mehreen Faruqi MLC has said the greyhound racing industry is already backing away from animal welfare promises  just three days after Mike Baird announced his backflip on the greyhound racing ban. Reports suggest that the greyhound racing industry won’t honour the 2,000 pup annual breeding cap.

Dr Faruqi said:

“As I’ve said all along the greyhound racing industry will promise the world and fail to deliver.  Just three days after Premier Mike Baird’s backflip, it seems the breeding cap of 2,000 pups is off the table.

“Having caved in to the greyhound racing and gambling industry and giving in to bullies, Premier Baird is now faced with an entirely predictable situation of them backing away from their promises.