Tag: The World/Australia

Daniel Andrews launches “Standing Together” (休戚与共) campaign with Chinese communities to combat challenges arising from the Coronavirus outbreak

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Photo: SAT file

By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE,20 February: Iconic Victorian landmarks will be lit up in red and gold and a trade delegation sent to China as part of the Andrews
Labor Government’s show of solidarity with Chinese communities.

Premier Daniel Andrews today launched the 休戚与共 campaign (“Stronger Together”) to combat some of the challenges arising from the COVID-19 outbreak and to urge Victorians to come together in support.

Premier Daniel Andrews says, “We have a long history of standing by our Chinese communities – and that’s what we need to be doing right now.”
We are with you during this challenging time – today, and every day, we are stronger together.”

As part of the push, some of Victoria’s most important buildings – including the Arts Centre, the NGV, the Melbourne Museum, Melbourne Town Hall and Flinders Street Station – will be lit up in red and gold as a symbol of solidarity with Chinese Victorians on Friday.

A number of economic roundtables will bring Chinese community leaders together to share ideas on how to revitalize local businesses and boost trade, with the outbreak already having a significant impact on the hospitality, tourism and international education sectors.

The Labor Government intends to lead a delegation of 100 Victorian businesses to China to further strengthen trade relations.

Minister for Multicultural Affairs Richard Wynne says, “As Victorians, we know the only way to respond is with compassion and consideration for each other. To every member of our Chinese community – please know, we stand with you.”

At home, the Government will also host a dinner for the Chinese community – including diplomatic, business and student leaders – paying tribute to the contributions our Chinese communities make to our state every day.

Minister for Jobs, Innovation, and Trade Martin Pakula, “Our partnership with China has helped make our state stronger and more successful.”
“While our trade, tourism and education engagement is crucial, what matters more are the people to people relationships, and at this difficult time, it’s the people of China we are thinking of.”

A media release says that the stories of the contribution of the Chinese communities will be featured across a number of Government digital platforms, sharing with more Victorians the profound role our Chinese communities have played in shaping our state and our nation.

27,419 to become Australian citizens on A-Day 2020

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By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 25 January 2020: More than 27,000 people will mark this Australia Day by becoming Australian citizens – the
largest-ever number to make the pledge on 26 January.

Acting Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services, and Multicultural Affairs Alan
Tudge congratulated the tens of thousands who are scheduled to attend 454 ceremonies around the nation.

“Australia Day is an opportunity to celebrate our success as a multicultural nation and
reflect on what it means to be an Australia,” Mr. Tudge said.

“Citizenship is a chance for new migrants to make a pledge to uphold our laws and values
and contribute to our cohesive, open and inclusive society.

“A citizenship ceremony is an important event in every new citizens’ life and being able to
attend one on Australia Day adds extra significance.”

Australia Day is the most popular day for people to attend a citizenship ceremony, with
100,000 people becoming Australian citizens on our national day in the past six years.
In September 2019, the Morrison Government amended the Australian Citizenship
Ceremonies Code to require councils to hold a citizenship ceremony on Australia Day.

Every council required to hold a ceremony is doing so and almost 140 councils who would
be exempt under the code have chosen to hold a ceremony anyway.
“This is the first time we are requiring councils to hold citizenship ceremonies on Australia
Day,” Mr. Tudge said.

“We want them to do the right thing as it is the most popular day for new migrants to
become an Aussie. This is the day that all of us can celebrate, whether born here or only
just becoming a citizen.”

The Government reached out to all councils affected by the recent bushfires, but all have
indicated they are going ahead with their ceremonies in recognition of their importance to
new citizens and the wider community.

More than 106,000 people have been welcomed as new Australian citizens in the last six
months.

Between 1 July and 31 December 2019, 106,704 people were conferred with Australian
citizenship, up from 48,983 in the same period in 2018, says a media release.

All citizenship applications are processed against a range of strengthened integrity
measures, introduced by the Government in 2015.

As bushfires ravage Australia, activists target Australian missions & Siemens globally to highlight climate emergency

Climate-2 final
Photo- Supplied.

By SAT News Desk

January 16th, 2020 – As Australia suffers devastating bushfires, Extinction Rebellion (XR) climate activists in over 35 countries are holding solidarity actions with Extinction Rebellion Australia’s Bushfire Rebellion outside Australian embassies and consulates for the second week in a row. Countries, including Nigeria, Zambia, Netherlands, Argentina, Uganda and Spain. Extinction Rebellion India, meanwhile, has been warned by local police not to protest.

The borderless, nonviolent rebellion comes in response to the Australian government’s climate inaction and exacerbation of the climate crisis which has led to the catastrophic bushfire crisis.

The catastrophic mega blaze has already led to what scientists are describing as an ecosystem and species apocalypse in Australia. Some estimates state that up to 700 animal species have had their populations decimated – with many species likely to be pushed to extinction including the Long-footed potaroo, the Greater glider, the Kangaroo Island dunnart, and the Black-tailed dusky antechinus, being obliterated from the face of the Earth.

“It would seem the only people willing to dismiss the scientific correlation between the bushfire crisis and the climate crisis are those massaged by the fossil fuel industry in the Australian government and those who believe the propaganda of fossil fuel-interested media,” said Extinction Rebellion Sydney spokesperson Larissa Payne.

While we are on the verge of triggering a climatic point of no return, German company Siemens agreed to participate in the development of the world’s largest coal mine. Siemens will supply the signage technology for the railway line of the Carmichael coal mine in Galilee Basin, Australia, quite literally signaling the way to the destruction of life on the Planet.

“Instead of demonstrating climate leadership and turning its back on one of the many culprits, it chooses to of quite literally fuel fires around the world, despite warnings from several environmental groups, ongoing protests, and over 60 companies pulling out of the project. Siemens undoubtedly places profit over the planet,” explains XR Germany spokesperson Annemarie Botski.

Meanwhile, companies from around the world display similar callousness for life on Earth, even as the island continent’s species go extinct, “In the same line, the Adani business group has obtained approvals for extracting coal from the Carmichael coal mines in Australia. Fighting to saving our planet has rightly turned global because of the impact of forest fires in Brazil, floods in Indonesia or fires in Australia are already being felt all across our Earth. Such tragedies will only increase in intensity and in terms of numbers,” says Extinction Rebellion India’s Jeevesh Gupta.

“It is believed several animal and plant species have been rendered extinct in the past few weeks. An estimated over half a billion animals have died in this disaster. Much of the severity of conditions in the southern parts of Australia can be attributed to massive amounts of land clearing in the past century, leading to loss of rainfall, and no consultation or respect by governments of the original Australians’ intact knowledge of caring for and maintaining the land,” laments Australian First Nation spiritual leader Nick Tree.

The fires sweeping the country have also pumped out an estimated 400 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, further fueling climate change that has already intensified Australia’s devastating fires. This is equivalent to the total combined annual emissions of 116 low-emitting countries and nine times the amount of carbon produced during California’s record-setting 2018 fire season.

“The climate crisis cares nothing for borders. We need coordinated, international action to combat this mess. The Bushfire Rebellion is only the beginning. Two-thirds of Australians want the government to declare a climate emergency and mobilize at the World-war scale. We are living through the tipping point that the scientists have been warning us about – anything less than an emergency response condemns out children to an unlivable future,” concludes XR Australia spokesperson Jane Morton

Actions will be held on the 16th and 17th January as a continuation of actions on the 10th of January in the following countries:

Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, Chile, Denmark, Finland, France, Gambia, Germany – Berlin, Hamburg, Hungary, India, Indonesia – Bali, Italy, Japan, Nigeria,
Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand – Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington, Poland, Portugal,
Scotland, Spain – Asturias, Barcelona, Madrid, Malaga, Murcia, South Africa, Sweden,
Tunisia, Uganda, United Kingdom – Bristol, London, Lambeth, United States – Houston, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Washington DC. and Zambia.

Source of information & photos: Extinction Rebellion, Australia.

Ten volunteers from the ‘Officer Sikh Gurudwara’ honoured with the 2019 Premier’s Volunteer Champions Awards

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Awardees and their families at the Government House. Photo: Supplied.

By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 1 December: Ten volunteers from the Sikh temple in Officer are now proud Volunteer Champions. These Volunteer Champions from the Siri Guru Nanak Darbar (SGND)- the Officer Sikh Gurudwara, Officer are among the 57 recipients of the 2019 Premier’s Volunteer Champions Awards who were honoured at Government House on 1 December 2019 for their unwavering passion, commitment and dedication to serve. The awards were presented by the Governor of Victoria, The Honourable Linda Dessau AC at the Government House.

While presenting the award, the group received a warm and commending mention which says, “Going beyond their mandate of ‘a place of worship’, the Officer Sikh temple has undertaken several social cohesion activities that have created bridges of trust between multi-cultural communities. This group has showcased how sharing and caring can win hearts”.

The recipients were Madhu Bhatia, Navpreet Dhanoa, Ramandeep Kang, Harjinder Kaur, Harjit (Ravneet) Kaur, Brijai Parikh, Randeep Saini, Avtar Singh, Manjinder Singh, and Ramneet Kaur Walia.

The ‘Officer Sikh Gurudwara’ has been active through its volunteers this year by providing free meals to BlazeAid volunteers, collecting donations for Bunyip bushfire relief and contributing hay to the Need for Feed movement, tree plantation, participating in different local and state functions, organising prayers for families affected by bushfires, Christchurch attacks and Sri Lankan church attacks, providing food donations to 4Cs and Baptist Church among others.

A media release from the Officer Sikh temple says, “To weave unconditional love in the very foundation of all the activities. Noteworthy is that SGND does not have any formal committee. It is run by a group of volunteers who work in diverse professions Most of these volunteers have young families and still manage to dedicate a significant amount of their after-work hours to help with every day running.”

The ‘Officer Sikh Gurudwara’ is situated at 33 Officer Road, Officer, Victoria 3809. And can be contacted at 0447028688 or info@sgnd.com.au. Website is – www.sgnd.com.au

Improving social inclusion could generate $12.7 b annual boost to Australian economy, says the Deloitte Access Economics report, commissioned by the SBS

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By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 28 August: Improving social inclusion in Australia has the potential to unlock a $12.7 billion economic dividend annually, and play a significant role in Australia’s future economic growth and prosperity, a report by Deloitte Access Economics, commissioned by SBS, has found.

Published today, The Economic Benefits of Improving Social Inclusion quantifies, for the first time in this way, the potential lift to Australia’s economy that could be driven by improved employment and health outcomes, increased workplace productivity, and reduced costs of social services, as a result of greater social inclusion.

John O’Mahony, Partner, Deloitte Access Economics, said: “Australia has experienced almost three decades of economic growth as a nation, and our economic success has helped sustain growth in living standards. Yet productivity growth has been weaker since 2004 and lifting it will be central to improving future living standards and ensuring all Australians benefit from our prosperity.

“Policies to drive economic growth often focus on financial and quantifiable aspects of markets and regulation, but there are also important social drivers. Improving social inclusion is a source of economic strength and higher living standards for all Australians. Having an inclusive society not only avoids the costs incurred when people are excluded but harnesses our diversity, providing fuel for creativity and innovation in our economy.”

Through new quantitative modeling, data, and analysis, Deloitte Access Economics has identified five key dimensions through which social inclusion can yield economic benefits:

• Increased productivity in the workplace: Business benefits from social inclusion in a number of ways: diversity can be a source of creativity and innovation, lifting productivity; social inclusion can also lift profitability and help target market segments. Increasing the share of women in senior leadership was estimated to increase Australia’s GDP by $5 billion through more creative, innovative and inclusive workplaces.
• Improved employment outcomes: Greater social inclusion means people are less likely to experience discrimination-based adversity, and less likely to experience discrimination in the first place, increasing their capacity to seek employment or gain longer working hours and contribute to the economy as a whole. Labour market benefits from improving social inclusion among migrant communities in Australia is estimated to yield economic and social benefits worth $1.2 billion a year.
• Improvement in mental and physical health: Social inclusion can counteract isolation and increase community participation, which helps to alleviate health problems, especially mental health issues such as anxiety and depression. The impact of social inclusion in improving health outcomes for migrant communities alone is estimated to improve well-being by $6.5 billion a year.
• Reduced cost of social services: Social inclusion reduces the cost of social services by easing pressure on the public health system and reducing the need for income and housing support payments.
• Inclusive growth: By lifting wages and workforce participation in geographical areas of socioeconomic disadvantage, the benefits of economic growth can be shared more evenly across all Australian communities.

James Taylor, SBS Managing Director, commented on the report: “Creativity, tenacity, vision and leadership – these are all critical drivers of innovation. These attributes are not unique to any one community, and they are not determined by where you were born, your family ancestry, the language you speak, your gender, sexual orientation or faith.

“Australia’s reputation as a successful and inclusive society can only benefit from further embracing difference in our teams, workplaces, and in our community. This report demonstrates that when we are all empowered and access to opportunity is more evenly shared, so too are the dividends for all.”

Dr Bulent Hass Dellal AO, SBS Chair, added: “Australia’s rich cultural diversity is one of our country’s greatest strengths. We are proudly an inclusive society but as this report shows there are opportunities from fostering greater inclusion which all Australians can benefit from in a tangible way. As Australia becomes increasingly diverse, the importance of fostering social inclusion will continue to grow. This is as important for ensuring cohesive communities as it is for Australia’s economic prosperity and makes the role that SBS has played for more than 40 years in contributing to social inclusion, more relevant and important today than ever before.

“There is power, potential, and a strong economic imperative in better understanding, respecting and celebrating our differences. This is central to all that SBS does, as a dedicated multicultural and Indigenous broadcaster delivering content and services that contribute to a more inclusive society.”

The quantitative analysis in the report largely focuses on the benefits of social inclusion for culturally and linguistically diverse communities, specifically migrant communities, but recognizes that there are many other groups that contribute to Australia’s diversity and for whom improving social inclusion is likely to result in additional economic benefits for Australia.

The report is available to download from www2.deloitte.com/au/benefits-improving-social-inclusion.