Are things getting worse under an O’Farrell and Stoner Government?
Two years into their term, the answer is yes. A short perusal of this edition of Red Leather shows where we are up to. Those that are being hit the hardest include public housing tenants, pensioners and injured workers.
As the Government tries to sell off everything including the poles and wires of our electricity assets, Port Botany and Port Kembla, and franchising the ferries; they are also starting to look at school sporting fields. We can expect more to come.
The support of the Christian Democrats and the Shooters party also means that compromises with the right wing cross-benchers have led or are leading to:
- Hunting in national parks
- The reopening of duck hunting
- Reinstatement of oaths to the Queen and monarchy (rather than the people of NSW)
- Wider access to shooting in schools
- Consideration of bills that seek to turn back the clock on hard won gains in many areas including for women and the GLBTI community.
In the area of Transport, there have been many press releases about 'fixing the trains' but since coming to government the results so far show:
It is any wonder that this year’s May Day parade saw over 7000 workers take to the streets to campaign for equal pay, more nurses and midwives, a better deal for cleaners, a commitment to local jobs through more local content in government procurement, fair wages for early childhood teachers and no further sales of electricity assets (to name just a few)?
In the next two years the Labor Opposition and the NSW Labor Policy Commissions will be developing the policy we take to the 2015 election. If there are issues that you care about and want to see changed – I want to hear from you. You do not have to be a member of the Labor Party – just someone who wants to see a better and fairer NSW.
Video of the week: Ok – so I couldn’t find one by deadline so will instead share my latest music obsession – Macklemore and Ryan Lewis. I’ve played it so much that my three year old knows the words.
Speech of the week: Want to know what NSW Labor really thinks about the North West Rail Link? Here is my speech to the Beecroft – Cheltenham Civic Trust last week. There will be a story about this on Stateline in coming weeks.
PS the GLORIAs are on this week. Come along for a terrific night to stand on the table and point at public homo- and transphobia. There is still time to book tickets and vote for the worst comment of 2013. VOTE NOW | BOOK NOW.
What’s happening in NSW?
Opposition Leader John Robertson called on Premier Barry O’Farrell to immediately rule out any weakening of NSW political donations laws – following revelations that a parliamentary inquiry is recommending reversing the tough laws designed to prevent developers from making donations in return for favourable decisions.
A review of the NSW Police child abuse squad has revealed major staffing shortages – with at least 50 child abuse cases at the point of arrest, but with no arrest made due to under resourcing.
Despite this, the O’Farrell Government has suspended recruitment for the NSW Police Force indefinitely – despite critical police shortages in the child abuse squad, public transport command and local police stations.
Electricity and gas prices will continue to soar this year (having already increased by as much as $750 for the average NSW household since Barry O’Farrell came to office) and a new report released by The Australia Institute has also confirmed that selling off the State’s poles and wires would likely send electricity bills even higher for NSW families.
On 15 April, the O’Farrell Government hit NSW pensioners and war widows with an unprecedented increase in their public housing rent. (Download and sign my petition to oppose this rent gouging here).
And now the O’Farrell Government is refusing to rule out scrapping the longstanding $250 deduction that provides relief to pensioners battling to pay their council rates.
The O’Farrell Government has dumped its election commitment to return planning powers to local communities.
Shadow Minister for Community Services Linda Burney called on the O’Farrell Government to immediately reinstate funding to the Welfare Rights Centre.
The NSW Labor Opposition has welcomed the recommendations of a parliamentary inquiry into the law of provocation.
Northern Tablelands by-election
Herman Beyersdorf, local resident and Deputy Mayor of Armidale, is the proud Country Labor candidate for the Northern Tablelands by-election.
Come along to a fundraiser to support Herman's campaign.
CITY HELPS THE COUNTRY
Herman is fighting a tough fight for Labor in the Northern Tablelands and he needs money!
When: Wednesday 8 May 6-8pm | Where: Macquarie Room at NSW Parliament House.
- NSW Labor Leader John Robertson MP
- Country Labor MLC Steve Whan
- Country Labor MLC Mick Veitch
Donation: $30-$50 (what you can afford) | RSVP: Herman.Beyersdorf@alp.com.au
What’s happening in Transport?
The rail system was thrown into chaos again this morning following a failure to finish weekend trackwork at Homebush. Trains arrived up to 30 minutes late, skipped stops and were out of timetable order – with commuters affected across the Airport and East Hills, Bankstown, Inner West, North Shore, Northern, South, Western and Blue Mountains lines. This is the twelfth major incident this year.
Last Thursday, I held a community forum last week about the lack of security across our rail network and I spent the previous week traveling from Shellharbour to Bega hosting a series of forums about public transport.
With Labor Candidate for Gilmore, Neil Reilly I launched a petition to demand any replacement Shoalhaven River Bridge is built so that a future extension of the South Coast line to Nowra could become a reality.
The GLORIAs are on this week
It’s time to vent about the 32 most offensive / ignorant / ridiculously homophobic or transphobic comments of the year...
Vote online now and/or join me and David Marr on Wednesday 8 May at NSW Parliament for a night of standing on the table and pointing out homo and transphobia!
When: 6-8pm, Wed 8 May
Where: Parliament of NSW
Cost: $70 / $45 conc.
Vote now | Book now
SAY NO TO HUNTING IN NATIONAL PARKS
Carmel Tebbutt, Member for Marrickville, is holding a public meeting to provide the latest information about the O’Farrell Government’s decision to allow hunting in national parks.
When: 6pm, Wednesday 15 May 2013
Where: Petersham Town Hall, Crystal Street, Petersham (nearest train station is Petersham Station)
Luke Foley, Shadow Minister for the Environment and Climate Change
Justin McKee, Campaign Coordinator, National Parks Association
Geo Papas, Industrial Officer, PSA
When: 6.30pm Wed 8 May
Where: The Hellenic Restaurant, 251 Elizabeth Street (between Liverpool and Bathurst Streets), Sydney.
RSVP: Click here on details for how to register
Fundraising Cocktail Party for Susan Templeman, Candidate for Macquarie
Hosted by the Hon Helen Westwood MLC | Guest speaker: Clare Martin former Chief Minister of the Northern Territory.
When: 6pm – 8pm, Monday 20th May 2013
Where: The Belvedere Hotel, lvl 1, 482 Kent Street (Cnr Bathurst St), Sydney
Cost: $80 (waged) $70 (unwaged)
Tory MP Amber Rudd was interviewed recently in the UK media. Her answers provide a quick guide on what not to say in an interview, or how Tories really think:
When asked why she chose to stand for a seat she had no links to:
“I wanted to be within two hours of London and I could see we were going to win it.”
On her constituents:
“You get people who are on benefits, who prefer to be on benefits by the seaside. They’re not moving down here to get a job, they’re moving down here to have easier access to friends and drugs and drink.”
And finally, on the upcoming vote on gay marriage:
“When it comes to a general election, I really don’t think they’ll still be thinking about anal sex.”