Daily News - Tuesday 18 November 2014

Posted 18 November 2014 7:52am

Bishop fears ‘catastrophic’ result of Colin Barnett’s remote closures
Paige Taylor, The Australian ($)

A unique study of “rough sleepers” in the West Australian tourist centre of Broome has found more than 100 homeless Aborigines in the town, sparking claims Premier Colin Barnett’s plan to close ­remote communities will exacerbate the problem.

Return to Country research, by Catholic charity Centacare, backs the claim by the Bishop of Broome, Christopher Saunders, that the town of 16,000 already faces a significant homeless problem. Bishop Saunders said closing remote communities en masse would be “catastrophic” for centres such as Broome and the aboriginal people themselves.

The study found that most of Broome’s homeless aboriginal people had drifted in from remote communities. Almost half of the 109 aborigines sleeping rough in the town said they wanted to go home, but 37 per cent said they now considered Broome home.


Indigenous suicide: 'prevention should focus on cultural reconnection'
Helen Davidson, The Guardian

Amid a rising epidemic of Indigenous suicide, elders and grassroots organisations are calling for prevention strategies to include Indigenous people and groups, and to focus on reconnecting people with their country and culture.

Indigenous elders and outreach workers from the Culture is Life campaign will this week visit Sydney to raise awareness of a report which interviewed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander elders about the crisis of suicide in their communities.


A new indigenous Stolen Generation
Jenna Price, The Canberra Times

Don't ever sit comfortably in your armchair and describe the stolen generation as a thing of the past. Don't do that.

At this moment, there are 14,000 Aboriginal babies and children in foster care, out-of-home care, or residential care. The attempted annihilation of the First Peoples continues.


Wage subsidies get men to work
Patricia Karvelas, The Australian

Men are much more likely to benefit from the government’s new wage-subsidy schemes than women, figures to be released today show.

The figures show a wage subsidy scheme for older Australians has helped 450 people find work, with men landing 62 per cent of those jobs, while a Tasmanian pilot scheme has realised 106 jobs, with 74 per cent of those going to men.

The Restart program, launched in July, offers a subsidy to employers if they take on workers who are at least 50 years old.


Youth unemployment a key challenge as boomers retire
Michael Janda. ABC

A new report highlights one of Australia's greatest economic challenges: convincing employers to take on young people to replace retiring baby boomers.

The latest AMP NATSEM (National Centre for Social and Economic Modelling) report focuses on the labour market and the demographic challenges it faces.


High levels of youth unemployment can threaten social stability, says Abetz
Eric Abetz, speech

High youth unemployment has continued to be a significant problem, with the World Bank estimating there are about 600 million young people who are neither working nor studying. That is, young people being denied the overwhelming personal benefits of meaningful engagement.

As well as the lost opportunities resulting from this disengagement, high levels of youth unemployment can threaten social stability.


Rising regional unemployment 'emergency' election issue
Peter Martin and Henrietta Cook

Ballarat, Bendigo, Shepparton and Geelong have emerged as employment flashpoints in the state election, recording increases in joblessness that dwarf those in Melbourne.

A Fairfax Media analysis of regional labour force data shows the average unemployment rate in Ballarat has surged from 2.5 per cent to 6.4 per cent in the space of a year. The unemployment rate in Bendigo has jumped from 5.1 per cent to 8 per cent.


$75 Million Jobs Plan Not Perfect - NFPs
Xavier Smerdon, Pro Bono News

Victorian Not for Profits have welcomed a $75 million Coalition promise to support businesses employ young Victorians who have been without a job for six months, but have said that the plan does not go far enough.

Victorian Premier Denis Napthine announced recently that if his Government was reelected it would spend $75 million to launch its Youth Employment Strategy.


Will growth mean more jobs? Not necessarily
Anthony D'Costa, The Drum

The G20 leaders are bent on raising the global economic growth rate to 2% or more than current projections. The economic logic behind this mysterious number is an unspecified investment commitment and reforms that collectively would induce economic growth and get the world economy moving again. The question is, will it get the economy moving again in terms of jobs? In fact, there is no explicit discussion by the G20 on the employment challenges that confront the world economy.


The hidden housing problem: older and still renting
Adele Horin

I never knew the elderly couple who rented a flat in the building next to our house. But I’ve never forgotten them. They kept to themselves and lived there less than two years. The owner of the block decided to renovate, and sold off the four apartments. All the renters had to go. The working couples would survive. But I worried about the couple in their 70s, probably pensioners, cast into the jungle of Sydney’s private rental market. What’s become of them?


Why brain science won’t cure poverty
Susan Sered, The Conversation

Social attitudes and policies regarding poor and marginalized Americans today are dominated by a culture that emphasizes individual rather than social pathology, and holds the individual accountable for the failings of the collective. That orientation is made clear in our national welfare policy - the “Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act,” and in our world-leading rates of incarceration and use of psychiatric medication.

Within this climate, the notion that we can change or cure the brains of poor people so that they will no longer be poor assumes that if the individual just tries hard enough, in the right way, with the right mentoring, there really is a path out of poverty, abuse or prison.


Salvation Army app launched to help people in need
George Lekakis, The New Daily

Lots of great ideas take root in South Australia.

In the past, some of them, such as the stump jump plough and the stripper harvester, did much to put bread on the tables of Australian battlers.

Now, a digital innovation, launched by the Salvation Army and the South Australian Government, is aiming to make life more manageable for low-income families and people living on the streets.

The “Affordable Living SA App” is the brainchild of Sharon Maslen, the program director of the Salvation Army’s financial counselling service in South Australia.


National Carer Award Winners!
Life Without Barriers

Life Without Barriers in consultation with Carers Australia and Families Australia, has today announced the four national winners for the inaugural National Carer Awards 2014.
The national awards recognise and celebrate Carers for the extraordinary contribution they make to the community.

Richard and Tracey Collard (WA), Judy Pattel (QLD), Paul Windridge (NSW), and Ellen Holmes (TAS) were named as winners and were selected across four categories: foster and kinship Carer, Carer of a person with a disability, Carer of a person who is frail due to age and young Carer aged 25 years and under, respectively.


Childcare staff-to-children ratios might change in SA, centres warn parents of rising costs

Childcare centres have warned parents might face a rise of $100 per week in fees from 2016 unless the South Australian Government delays changes to regulations to require more childcare workers.

The ratio of carers to children aged two or three is to double from one-for-10 to one-for-five.


Thousands are living in 'modern slavery' in Australia, says Walk Free Foundation
Rebecca Le May, The Canberra Times

While slavery is assumed to be an issue from a bygone era, an Andrew Forrest-founded foundation estimates 3000 people are enslaved through debt bondage or the like in Australia.

According to Walk Free Foundation's second Global Slavery Index, two-thirds of the 35.8 million people living in "modern slavery" around the world are in Asia, mainly in India, China and Pakistan.

They're trapped in forced or servile marriages, commercial sexual exploitation or bonded labour in industries such as construction, agriculture and garment manufacturing.


Statement from C20 Chair Tim Costello in response to G20 Communique

“Our position remains, you cannot reduce inequality by increasing it and you can’t deliver inclusive growth if you push whole tranches of your community further into poverty in the process.

“We will remain steadfast in our advocacy to ensure governments know what is expected of them.”

C20 Briefing paper: Inclusive Growth: ensuring everyone shares in the benefits of g20’s 2% growth target (pdf)


ACOSS says ambitious G20 targets fail to mention need for social protection
Alison Caldwell, PM, ABC

One of the targets of the G20 communiqué is to close the gender gap in the workplace by 25 per cent over the next couple of decades.

It's calculated that reaching that target would bring an extra 100 million women into the labour force.

Dr Cassandra Goldie of the Australian Council of Social Services' says it's an aspirational target, but one which fails to mention the need for social protections.


Pope Francis’s opening address to Humanum conference
Catholic Herald

Evidence is mounting that the decline of the marriage culture is associated with increased poverty and a host of other social ills, disproportionately affecting women, children and the elderly. It is always they who suffer the most in this crisis.

The crisis in the family has produced an ecological crisis, for social environments, like natural environments, need protection. And although the human race has come to understand the need to address conditions that menace our natural environments, we have been slower to recognize that our fragile social environments are under threat as well, slower in our culture, and also in our Catholic Church. It is therefore essential that we foster a new human ecology.


Beware labeling Pope Francis a liberal
Chris Ip, Columbia Journalism Review

The most radical thing Pope Francis does is show compassion towards people despite disagreeing with their principles, which is a sentiment increasingly absent from political discourse. His words are significant because he cares little for partisan posturing, not because they are evidence for his supposed liberal standpoint. If that’s the case, every time the media pigeonholes him into a political camp, they are not just skewing his views—they are missing the point.


Pope Francis to accountants: Put people before money
Catholic News Service

Pope Francis has asked accountants to remember that behind every piece of paper that cross their desks there are real human beings.

Addressing 7,000 accountants participating at the World Congress of Accountants on Friday, the Pope said: “When money is the aim and reason for every activity and initiative,” everything and everyone is placed at its service, and both solidarity and respect for people decline.

Pope Francis said the global financial situation particularly highlights the importance of work and the disaster of unemployment.

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