26 September 2023

PS from the PaSt: 12–18 September 2012

Start the conversation

1. This week 10 years ago, with the tenth anniversary of the Bali bombings in sight, Attorney-General Nicola Roxon called for increased community vigilance about the risks of chemicals and the need to prevent them from being used for terrorism.

Ms Roxon said certain everyday chemicals used in the garden, for the family pool, at the hairdresser or on the farm, in the wrong hands, could be used in terrorist attacks.

She said if something did not feel right, people should report their concerns to the National Security Hotline on 1800 1234 00.

“We need the community, and retailers of chemicals, to report suspicious behaviour or unusual activity,” Ms Roxon said.

2. Citizenship laws were changed to allow the family members of foreign recruits into the Australian Defence Force (ADF) to receive their citizenship rights at the same time as the recruit.

Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen said the new rules would come into effect on 1 January 2013.

“The Government recognises that families who support ADF members serving Australia should be able to build a close and continuing relationship with Australia at the same time as their serving family members,” Mr Bowen said.

“We are providing families with earlier eligibility for citizenship to assist them with settling in Australia, including providing access to employment opportunities and educational assistance.”

3. Victoria’s Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE) unveiled five custom-built trailers that could be moved quickly around the State in the event of wildlife being threatened by an oil spill.

The trailers were specially fitted out with equipment to capture, wash, dry and rehabilitate wildlife in the early stages of a spill.

Spokesperson for DSE’s Wildlife Conservation and Management Unit, Caitlin Barry said the early stages of an oil spill were the most important for saving wildlife and the trailers allowed experienced staff and trained wildlife rescuers to get on-site quickly.

4. Vodafone Australia agreed to join the location-based emergency warning system used during natural emergencies and disasters.

Federal Attorney-General and Minister for Emergency Management, Nicola Roxon said the enhanced system would mean that people in disaster areas would receive an alert based on their location, rather than relying on their registered address.

“Getting emergency warnings out effectively during a natural disaster is absolutely critical,” Ms Roxon said.

“These changes are going to be a huge help for our Emergency Service Agencies and will help to prepare local communities in times of disaster.”

5. South Australian Minister for Health and Ageing, John Hill launched a new purpose-built neonatal and paediatric ambulance for the MedSTAR Kids service.

Mr Hill said the ambulance was the result of innovation and clinical expertise from the SA Ambulance Service that would lead to better care and better outcomes for patients.

“The new vehicle is a fantastic addition to a vital service, taking care of our youngest patients, including premature babies weighing as little as 500 grams,” Mr Hill said.

“This means a mother in need of emergency care can be transported at the same time and in the same vehicle as her newborn.”

6. Also in South Australia a decade ago, an endangered native fish was brought back from the brink of extinction with the help of aquatic scientists from the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI).

The Southern purple-spotted gudgeon was believed to be extinct in the State in the 1970s but a small remnant population was discovered in a wetland near Mannum in 2002.

SARDI scientist, Chris Bice said 60 adult fish were rescued during the drought to be maintained and bred in captivity and returned to the wild when the waters came back.

“Following the initial release of approximately 200 fish, we have since recaptured three marked gudgeon, indicating the survival of these fish in the wild, which is a good sign for the recovery of the species,” Mr Bice said.

Start the conversation

Be among the first to get all the Public Sector and Defence news and views that matter.

Subscribe now and receive the latest news, delivered free to your inbox.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.