Tag: Victoria

Melbourne lockout ends from 11.59 pm Thursday 10 June; many restrictions eased

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Photo- SAT/NN

By Neeraj Nanda

MELBOURNE, 9 June 2021: Lockout here ends from 11.59 pm Thursday 10 June, the five reasons to leave home will no longer apply in metro Melbourne and the existing 10-kilometre limit will be increased to 25 kilometers. Schools will open with face-to-face learning from Friday (11 June).

In his live media update today, Acting Premier James Merlino said “We’re also still not in a position to be able to have visitors to our home, but outdoor gatherings will be increased to a maximum of ten people. And mask rules will be eased slightly – required inside, and outdoors when 1.5 meters isn’t possible.

In good news for families, schools will be able to resume face-to-face learning for all students from Friday. Cafes, restaurants, and pubs will open – with strict safety measures like density limits, seated service, and QR codes in place. The remaining retail will also open. Hairdressing, beauty, and personal care can resume, but only for services where masks can be kept on. Visitors still not permitted to aged care facilities.

Weddings will be limited to 10 people, and funerals no more than 50. Fifty will also be the limit on religious gatherings. Swimming pools, entertainment venues, and community facilities will also open subject to density limits. And community sport can happen, but only for training.”

In regional Victoria, restrictions will also ease. Visitors to the home are allowed – limited to two people and their dependants – once per day. Public outdoor gatherings will be limited to 20 people. Gyms will remain closed.

There’ll also be increases to the capacity limits at places like restaurants, entertainment venues, community facilities, and religious gatherings. Indoor sport, including gyms, will also be able to reopen with careful limits on the number of people permitted at any point in time.

PM ScoMo announces lockdown support payments amidst vaccine undersupply in Victoria

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PM ScoMo addressing media conference, Parliament House, Canberra. Photo- Grab from live.

By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 3 June: Prime Minister Scott Morrison today announced support payments for those in lockouts for more than seven days. These will be in addition to the already announced support payments for businesses by the Victorian government. The Federal payments will be week by week and fall in categories of $ 500 a week (20 hours + working) and $ 375 a week (less than 20 hours working). These payments will apply to declared ‘Commonwealth Hot Spot” areas, for which Greater Melbourne now qualifies.

The announcements were made live on TV and Facebook by the PM countrywide along with Treasurer David Frydenberg and Minister for Emergency Response David Littleproud from Parliament House’s Blue Room in the afternoon today. The announcements made are similar to payments being made in New Zealand.

The payments will be made to people over 17 with liquid assets less than $ 10,000. The National Cabinet, the PM said, will decide how the payments will be divided between the state and the Federal Government.

Earlier, the undersupply of vaccines in Victoria was highlighted as Acting Premier James Merlino said “vaccination was the only way out of the pandemic but the state was waiting on a greater supply of vaccines from the federal government” (ABC report). Meanwhile, Labor MP Julian Hill attacked the PM today saying, ” He failed the hotel quarantine. He is failing on vaccines. And he is now failing Victoria.”

WorkSafe Victoria launches ‘Workplace safety is our common language’ campaign

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By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 28 April 2021: WorkSafe is ensuring safety is a common language for all Victorians following the launch of
it’s latest campaign to assist workers from culturally diverse backgrounds.

The $1 million ‘Workplace Safety is our Common Language’ campaign speaks directly to workers in 19 different languages to help everyone understand their health and safety rights, and equip them with the knowledge and confidence to raise questions or concerns.

This includes translated advice for workers, resources for employers, and videos featuring
real workers who share their experiences in Victorian workplaces.

Talking about workplace safety and raising concerns can be hard when working with close friends or family and it can be even harder when co-workers speak a different language.

WorkSafe Executive Director of Health and Safety Julie Nielsen said employers had to ensure workers from culturally diverse backgrounds understood their health and safety rights.

“We know people who speak multiple languages and are learning English face unique risks compared to their co-workers, but that is no excuse for failing to ensure their health and safety,” Ms Nielsen said.

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“WorkSafe is providing resources in additional languages to help all workers and employers understand their rights and responsibilities and to ensure every worker returns home safe at the end of the day.”

WorkSafe now has health and safety information available in nine new languages including Bahasa Indonesia, Greek, Hindi, Italian, Malay, Punjabi, Spanish, Tagalog, Thai, and Urdu. This is in addition to the information already available in Arabic, Burmese, Cantonese, Dari, Dinka, Khmer, Korean, Mandarin, and Vietnamese.

The campaign launched on Sunday, 21 March across multicultural print, radio, and digital media outlets. WorkSafe also hosted an online panel event for community leaders, business owners, and workers from multicultural communities on 24 March as part of the campaign.

The panel featured prominent community and business representatives, including AfroAustralian Student Organisation founder Monica Forson and former Victoria Street Business Association President Meca Ho, who discussed health and safety in multicultural workplaces and a path towards normalizing conversations about safety.

More than 280 Victorians contacted WorkSafe’s interpreter service for health and safety advice so far this financial year.

Workers wanting to know more about their health and safety rights can call TIS National on 131 450 to reach WorkSafe with an interpreter, between 7.30 am and 6.30 pm Monday to Friday.

For more information on health and safety in any of the 19 languages, visit www.worksafe.vic.gov.au/languages.

Victoria’s first Indian community centre in Rowville inaugurated by Alan Tudge & Michael Sukar

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An outside view of the community centre.Photo-SAT

By Neeraj Nanda

MELBOURNE, 26 March 2021: It was a proud moment for Indians in Victoria with the inauguration of the first ‘Australia India Community Centre’ in Rowville. The years of failed attempts and attempts finally bore fruit with Aston Alan Tudge MP Minister for Education and Youth & Federal Member for Aston and Michael Sukar MP, Federal Member for Deakin and Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Housing opened the place with great fanfare in the presence of hundreds of guests. A Bollywood dance item performed to celebrate the event enthralled the audience present.

SEE BOLLYWOOD DANCE VIDEO

The Centre was partially funded by the Australian Government with $2.5 million funding in addition to funding by the seven Trustees of the Australian Indian Community Charitable Trust. Mr. Vasan Srinivasan, who heads the Centre told SAT, ” The State Government has promised another $ 95,000 which has yet to come.

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MR. Vasan Srinivasan addresses the audience. Photos-SAT

He disclosed the two-story Center has a built-up area of 1040 sq Meters and lots of parking. An application has also been made for permission to hold events at the Centre.”

” The backside of the Centre will soon have sports facilities and the first floor now has the ‘Dr. Dinesh Parekh Museum India’, shifted from Foster Street, Dandenong. The Museum is a highlight of the Centre with Dr. Dinesh Parekh’s collections of paintings, photographs, stamps, coins, and books. Dr. Parekh died last month and today his wife, son, and daughter-in-law were present to grace the occasion.

Among those who addressed the gathering were Minister Alan Tudge, Michael Sukar MP, Mr. Raj Kumar, India’s Consul General in Melbourne, Dr. Parekh’s son, Mathew Guy, and Vasan Srinivasan. Mementos were also given away.

In his address, Alan Tudge said that once final council approval is complete the two-story building will be used as Victoria’s first Indian Community Centre, and include multiple assembly halls, a commercial kitchen, meeting and storage rooms, a car park, an administration, and reception area, offices for three Indian community peak bodies as well as a secure area for Museum India which showcases India’s rich history and heritage.

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Mr. Alan Tudge addresses those preesent. Photos-SAT

“This was an election commitment of the Morrison Government and I am so pleased to see it up and running,” Mr. Tudge said.

He also read out the message of PM Scott Morrison. ” This Centre, I know, will give much – not only to this community, but to the wider community, and to everyone who passes through its doors. I foresee many gatherings, full of color, family, friendship, and of course food!
My congratulations and very best wishes for the long life of the Australia India Community Centre,” he said.

Chair of the Australia India Community Charitable Trust Vasan Srinivasan said he was truly excited for the community centre to officially opened.

“I wish to thank the Morrison Government and our Deputy Prime Minister, the Hon. Michael McCormack for the funding and approval of this project, along with Hon. Alan Tudge and Hon. Michael Sukkar for their support to see this project formalized and delivered,” Mr. Srinivasan said.

“I am also excited to see the Community Centre become the new home of the Museum India, which will be named in memory of Dr. Dinesh Parekh – the collector and curator of the museum’s collection.”

The community centre is situated at 16-18 Kingsley Close, Rowville, Victoria 3178.

(The story will be updated soon with more text and photos)

Victoria establishes Ministerial Taskforce to curb sexual harassment in workplaces

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Photo- @GabbyWilliamsMP

By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 8 March 2021: The Andrews Labor Government has begun work on a new plan to stamp out sexual harassment in Victorian workplaces. Already the Victorian Government benches comprise 28 % women and its cabinet is majority female (12/22, says Gabrielle Williams MP, State MP for Dandenong & Minister of Family Violence, Women & Aboriginal Affairs in a Tweet.

Acting Premier James Merlino joined Minister for Workplace Safety Ingrid Stitt and Minister for Women Gabrielle Williams on International Women’s Day today to announce the establishment of a Ministerial Taskforce on Workplace Sexual Harassment to develop reforms that will prevent and better respond to sexual harassment in workplaces.

Minister for Women Gabrielle Williams says, “Too many women have had to deal with the disrespect, humiliation, and intimidation of sexual harassment when we are simply trying to do our jobs – these reforms will go a long way to improving workplace culture for everyone.”

A key initiative of this reform program will be starting consultation on a mandatory incident notification scheme that would require employers to notify WorkSafe of workplace sexual harassment.

The Taskforce will consider ways to strengthen the occupational health and safety framework to address sexual harassment, clarify employer obligations to boost accountability, encourage and support workers to speak up, and consider measures to prevent the misuse of non-disclosure agreements in sexual harassment matters.

The Taskforce will be co-chaired by Parliamentary Secretary for Workplace Safety Bronwyn Halfpenny MP and Chair of the Equal Workplaces Advisory Council and experienced workplace injury lawyer, Liberty Sanger. It will include union, employer, and legal representatives, and will deliver its advice to the Government later this year.

Acting Premier James Merlino says, “A workplace that is not free from sexual harassment is an unsafe workplace. Inappropriate and dangerous
behaviour must be called out and acted on – and that starts with changing workplace culture.”

A new Memorandum of Understanding between WorkSafe and the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission (VEOHRC) will also help to create a unified approach to address workplace sexual harassment.

Under the agreement, WorkSafe and VEOHRC will share information, refer inquiries and complaints to each other and collaborate on inspections, education, and promotional activities – leading to more coordinated response and greater support for workers seeking help.

WorkSafe inspectors will also undergo targeted training on best-practice responsesforsexual harassment incidents.

A new WorkSafe campaign, “Let’s Be Very Clear”, was also launched today. The campaign is a call to action to raise awareness of what workplace sexual harassment is, educate employers on their responsibilities and encourage workers to call out unacceptable behaviour when they see it.
Targeting high-risk industries, the “Let’s Be Very Clear” campaign will reinforce that protecting workers from sexual harassment in the workplace is every employer’s responsibility – and that failing to do so is against the law.