A New Year – (2013, the year that was).

At the end of each year, like many others I’ve always enjoyed looking back at the year that was and making predictions and plans for how what the next year will be. The end of 2013 was no exception, but I felt a strong need to finish writing and sorting photos for my post “Logging in WA’s South West” before I wrote this post.

For me, 2013 was a year of much personal and professional progress, but also a year of serious emotional ups and downs and mental health challenges like I had never experienced before. I started the year out on the streets of New York, inebriated by too much top-shelf alcohol consumed while watching comedy to bring in the new year at the Gotham Comedy Club. The hectic nature of New York city on New Years Eve was an accurate omen for how the rest of 2013 would play out, over-crowded and full-on.

My story for 2013 is one of a year not for the feint of heart. Continue reading A New Year – (2013, the year that was).

Episode 8: Education Cuts in Western Australia

Episode 8 of the (un) Common Sense Podcast is now available! This week’s episode focuses entirely on the Barnett Government’s cuts to education in Western Australia. Luke speaks with local Society and Environment Teacher Mark, about the implications of these cuts. Topics discussed include:

  • The role of an Education Assistant in the classroom environment
  • The importance of Education Assistants to special needs students
  • Likely impact of losing 500 Full-Time Equivalent Education Assistant jobs
  • Peter Collier & Colin Barnett back-flipping on pre-election promise there would be ‘no job losses’ in public sector.
  • Risk of super-sizing schools
  • Importance of culture and community within a school
  • Likelihood of further cuts to Education under a Liberal Government
Play

Continue reading Episode 8: Education Cuts in Western Australia

24 Hour Police Station and the Armadale Town Forum

Written for Armadale Town Forum held on 20th June, 2013.

Hi fellow residents and official guests.

I want to read this letter out to all of you because I believe it is important to state what we in Armadale want and why.

What we really want in Armadale is to change how safe we feel in our own community, especially at night. We want to permanently secure our town centre and public transport so restaurants and other businesses can thrive at night.

The police station should have a presence of its own in the town centre. The existing station is out of sight from the town centre and even further from the train station. Continue reading 24 Hour Police Station and the Armadale Town Forum

March Against Monsanto, Agent Orange and GMOs

Last weekend I took part in the March Against Monsanto here in Perth.

It was a good turn out for Perth. Between 1500 and 2000 people attended on a day which started at Parliament House, continued with a march through the city and ended up with speeches in Raine Square.

Monsanto are the most unethical company in the worldresponsible for the likes of Agent Orange and genetically modified crops which had a variety of negative effects when independently tested on rats.

Monsanto are also responsible for promoting irresponsible use of ‘Round Up’, which we now know is linked with Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Autism, Depression, Cancer and other medical conditions. It’s no surprise then that the local population are resisting Monsanto’s attempts to bully their way into WA’s agriculture industry.

Continue reading March Against Monsanto, Agent Orange and GMOs

Armadale needs a 24 hour police station

Armadale is a lower socio-economic area in the South-East of Perth with an unwarranted bad name due to persistent high crime rates.  It’s also my home town and we really need 24 hour, 7 day a week walk-in police station.

I’ve lived here (or in the surrounding suburbs) for more than 22 years now, since I was a 4 year old. Growing up in the area necessitated learning some street smarts, but was hardly a hostile environment for this privileged white kid to grow up in. I did OK. My brother and sister did too.

Unfortunately the quality and quantity of facilities for youths has not progressed since I was a kid, and nor have the local policing services. No offence meant to the hard-working local police with whom I have had many positive experiences. It’s not their fault they are under-resourced.

Armadale Residents Rally for a 24/7 walk-in police station.

Continue reading Armadale needs a 24 hour police station