Somerville House continues call for abandonment of private school body and more Zedlines

Parents of Somerville House have ramped up pressure for the Presbyterian and Methodist Schools Association to dismantle their governing body at the school.

Numerous staff, including Principal Florence Kearney have resigned in opposition to the PMSA in recent months, with further protests scheduled for the 21st of November.

The debacle began when Somerville House senior executive Rick Hiley was fired over a data breach, before being promoted within the PMSA to their general manager.

 

LNP pledges pedestrian and cycle crossings upgrade

Opposition Leader, Tim Nicholls, says he’ll dedicate three million dollars to investigations into future pedestrian and cycle crossings over the Brisbane River if LNP wins the next election.

Mr Nicholls says investing in these projects will relieve congestion, and build on lifestyle opportunities.

While Mr Nicholls has pledged commitment to these upgrades, his party has not yet committed to the 5.4 billion dollar Cross River Rail project.

 

Nick Xenophon Team to oppose drug testing of welfare recipients

The Nick Xenophon Team has announced that it will oppose the government’s plans to randomly drug test welfare recipients.

This means that the government’s broader bill designed to overhaul Australia’s welfare system will be difficult to get through the senate, as Labor and the Greens have already indicated that they would not support random drug testing.

A spokesperson for Nick Xenophon Team MP Rebekha Sharkie says the party has reached a position of not supporting random drug testing, after months of negotiation with the government over the bill.  

 

Same Sex Marriage bill to contain ample religious protections

In an attempt to avoid more in fighting in the coalition, the Liberal Dean Smith bill promises ample religious protections.

There are debates between Dean Smith’s bill, and Liberal Senator James Paterson’s bill which offers even more religious protections, even beyond marriage ceremonies.

The proposals in Mr Smith’s bill ensures people cannot be sued for refusal of service.

 

Manus water supplies deliberately destroyed

Australian authorities have begun to destroy water supplies and shelters at the decommissioned Manus Island detention centre in Papua New Guinea.

According to refugees that refuse to leave the facility, workers have drilled holes in rainwater tanks and dumped rubbish in wells.  

The United Nation High Commissioner for Refugees has declared the situation a ‘humanitarian emergency’, as 400 refugees are currently without electricity, food and healthcare, and are living in makeshift shelters.

Immigration Minister Peter Dutton says Australia will not be shifting its immigration policies.

 

UN envoy finds evidence of crimes against humanity

A UN envoy found evidence of widespread atrocities being committed against Rohingya girls and women because of their ethnicity and religion.

Pramila Patten, special representative to the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres visited field locations, including the Bangladesh-Myanmar border, to obtain witness accounts.

She will compile a report for the Security Council in March 2018 and also present her findings to the President of the International Criminal Court.

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