26 September 2023

PS from the PaSt: 21–27 February 2012

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1. This week 10 years ago, an anti–domestic violence campaign managed by the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs was chosen as a finalist in the international AvonCommunications Awards.

Minister for the Status of the Women, Julie Collins said The Line campaign, which connected with young people through the types of communications channels they used, was nominated for its “innovative and unique approaches to communicating about violence against women”.

“In a recent survey, 84 per cent of young people said they were starting to change the way they behave in their relationships and are increasing their awareness of what is ‘crossing the line’,” Ms Collins said.

2. The NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) recommended changes to the State’s planning system to minimise the risk of corruption.

The ICAC said safeguards needed to be adopted to ensure greater transparency, accountability and openness and recommended the NSW Government take steps to reduce the complexity of the planning system.

“The Government should ensure that planning authorities are required to provide regular information and updates to the public about development applications under assessment, including any significant changes made to an application,” the ICAC said.

3. NSW Premier, Barry O’Farrell announced NSW Police would take over security for the State’s public transport network under a new dedicated Police Transport Command, which would see 610 dedicated officers allocated to patrol trains, buses and ferries.

Mr O’Farrell said transit officers would be redeployed to focus on detecting fare evasion and minor compliance offences and their patrols would be expanded to cover buses and ferries.

“There is nothing more reassuring than a high-visibility, high-profile police presence on trains, buses and ferries,” Mr O’Farrell said.

4. Staying in NSW, Premier, Barry O’Farrell said new rules clamping down on donations to political parties would give his State the fairest electoral funding system in the country.

Mr O’Farrell said legislation restricting political donations to individual citizens on the electoral roll had been passed in the Upper House.

“The reforms are based on a very clear principle: only those entitled to a vote at an election should be allowed to decide whether or not to make political donations,” Mr O’Farrell said.

“Corporations, unions and other third-party organisations are not entitled to a vote and shouldn’t be allowed to influence the system,” he said.

5. In the first global grading of international student cities, Melbourne was ranked fourth in the world, behind Paris, London and Boston.

The Minister responsible for international students, Louise Asher said the London-based ranking organisation for universities, QS, had placed Melbourne ahead of all other Australian capital cities as the best place for international students.

“This ranking is based on a wide range of indicators including the prestige of our education institutions, affordability, diversity and strong employability of our graduates,” Ms Asher said.

6. Chief Executive of Airservices Australia, Greg Russell responded vigorously to a media report claiming a delay in upgrading equipment at Gold Coast Airport was endangering lives.

Mr Russell labelled the Gold Coast Bulletin’s report “sensationalist, inaccurate and unhelpful”, and said the airport was operating safely.

“Irresponsible speculation on this point risks damaging confidence in the airport and the local economy, which relies on the business and tourism benefits it delivers,” Mr Russell said.

He said Airservices Australia was working closely with the airport and the aviation industry to progress the installation of an instrument landing system.

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