Supermax gains from $47m investment in Countering Terrorism
(See Translation in Arabic Section
Sydney - M E Times Int'l: Minister for Counter Terrorism and Corrections Anthony Roberts has today officially opened the refurbishment of Australia’s most secure prison, Goulburn’s High Risk Management Correctional Centre.
Mr Roberts said the upgrade is part of a wider $47 million NSW Government investment in countering terrorism and violent extremism.
“Increasing the operational capacity of Supermax from 45 to 75 beds allows Corrective Services NSW to separate convicted terrorists from other inmates, thereby reducing the risk of radicalisation within the prison system,” Mr Roberts said.
“The NSW Government’s investment also included the establishment of a dedicated Counter Terrorism Intelligence Unit responsible for the identification, assessment, and monitoring of extremist and national-security-interest offenders in prison.”
The site features a state-of-the-art, fully integrated security management system that now expands across the entire prison precinct and perimeter with new equipment and a new control room. This investment includes upgrades to electronic security, including CCTV, telephone and audio monitoring, an X-ray machine and walk-through metal detector. There is also a new secure-visits and legal visits area and a separate audio-visual link area.
Corrective Services NSW Acting Commissioner Kevin Corcoran said the refurbishment of Supermax followed the opening in Goulburn in 2019 of High Risk Management Correctional Centre 2.
“The two units provide greater options to manage terrorists safely, securely and efficiently, with Area 2 to eventually operate as a step-down facility for inmates demonstrating a commitment to disengage from radical behaviour,” Mr Corcoran said.
“Area 2 will also provide more therapeutic intervention and access to programs, to aid their rehabilitation.”
Fifty-one Extreme High Risk inmates were securely housed at Area 2 while the upgrade took place.
SUV drives through US Christmas Parade, leaving multiple dead, more than 20 injured
Sydney: Several people have been killed and more than a dozen injured after a SUV drove through a crowd of people at a Wisconsin Christmas Parade on Sunday.
The City of Waukesha was celebrating its 58th annual Christmas parade before a red vehicle crashed through parade barriers and drove into a mass of performers at around 4:40pm (local time).
Wisconsin Police Chief Dan Thompson said the vehicle struck more than 20 individuals, including children, but did not specify how many.
"Vehicles struck more than 20 individuals. Some of the individuals were children and there are some fatalities as a result of this incident," he said at a press conference.
"We will not be releasing information on the fatalities at this time while we are working on notifying the family members of the deceased."
Mr Thompson said a "person of interest" is now in custody but stressed the investigation is still very active.
"This is still a very fluid investigation," he said.
"It is unknown at this time whether this incident has any nexus to terrorism. The scene is now safe and secure."
Pilot of specialist approach for sentencing Aboriginal offenders
Sydney: Eligible Aboriginal offenders will receive a more culturally-specific and community-based approach to sentencing, as part of a new pilot in the NSW District Court.
Attorney General Mark Speakman today announced the Walama List pilot will start operations in February 2022 at the Sydney Downing Centre District Court. Offenders will be drawn from Sydney, Parramatta, Campbelltown and Penrith District Courts.
“The Walama List pilot aims to bring more community involvement into the judge’s sentencing process, building trust in the justice system and improving the diversion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander offenders into critical support services that tackle the causes of offending behaviour,” Mr Speakman said.
“This program harnesses the wisdom of Aboriginal Elders and respected community members in sentencing discussions, along with providing wraparound support services and intensive monitoring before sentencing.
“We’re working hand-in-hand with Aboriginal communities to address the disproportionate rates of Aboriginal incarceration, drive down reoffending and find solutions that work.”
Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Don Harwin said this pilot will support the whole-of-government commitment to improving the lives of Aboriginal people under the National Agreement on Closing the Gap.
“This groundbreaking initative goes to the heart of our commitment under the National Agreement, by embedding Aboriginal customs and learnings into the justice system and supporting Aboriginal people to drive better outcomes.”
Chief Judge of the District Court, Justice Derek Price AO, said the Sydney Walama List pilot is the next step in the District Court's commitment to developing a Walama Court, and with it, culturally appropriate responses in sentencing Indigenous offenders.
“The support of the Attorney General and funding for the pilot enables the essential involvement of Elders in sentencing conversations and importantly for Elders to be remunerated for their participation,” Justice Price said.
"The pilot will be capably managed by her Honour Judge Dina Yehia SC, who brings all of the knowledge from her role as Chair of the Walama Court Working Group and from years of working with Aboriginal legal services early in her Honour's life in the Law."
Director of the ASU, Edwina Crawford, said the pilot will build on the success of other Indigenous sentencing courts across NSW, which have been shown to reduce the risk of reoffending and improve community confidence in the criminal justice system.
NSW calls on business experts to share their knowledge
Sydney: The NSW Government is calling for suppliers to deliver Business Connect advisory services to support small businesses to start, run, adapt and grow.
Minister for Finance and Small Business Damien Tudehope encouraged small businesses and social enterprises with suitable experience and capacity to register their interest in delivering the Government’s Business Connect program.
“Small businesses are the backbone of their communities and if we support them to stay in business and grow, they will create local jobs and grow our economy,” Mr Tudehope said.
The NSW Government will soon be forming a panel of suppliers to deliver business support through the Business Connect program for the next three years, starting from April 2022, including regional and specialist suppliers.
“These providers will deliver business advice, events and tools customised to the needs of small and medium businesses areas across the state, to assist them in their recovery and their ongoing success.”
Mr Tudehope said the NSW Government was investing more than $30 million in the Business Connect program over four years, which will help drive our economic recovery
The current Business Connect services are in place until 31 March, 2022.
To register an expression of interest visit nsw.gov.au/businessconnect.
“Fishers are an integral part of our state’s economy and lifestyle and they know best practice"- Minister Adam Marshall
Sydney: Minister for Agriculture Adam Marshall has today taken aim at the Animal Justice Party (AJP) for recklessly threatening the future of the state’s invaluable fishing industry.
Mr Marshall said he would not entertain the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Amendment (Aquatic Animal Recognition) Bill 2021 tabled before Parliament by the radical group.
“The Animal Justice Party has put forward a bill before Parliament which threatens to strip our fishers of their long-standing and perfectly sound rights,” Mr Marshall said.
“I fiercely oppose this bill and so too does the NSW Government.
“Fishers are an integral part of our state’s economy and lifestyle and they know best practice. I won’t let dangerous left-wing ideologues with no knowledge of industry or who have never wet a line tell them how to do their business.
“If anyone thinks I would ever sit idly by while the AJP jeopardises the rights and future of any of our critical sectors, including recreational and commercial fishing, but also farming and agricultural practices, then they are plain wrong.
“I couldn’t imagine a single one of our fishers wanting to inflict unnecessary harm on any being, but with NSW home to the strongest suite of animal cruelty penalties, I know these act as a deterrent to any member of the public who considers doing this.”
“The NSW Government has received feedback from more than 6,000 submissions of community consultation.” Mr Marshall said.
For more information on the Animal Welfare Review, visit the NSW Department of Primary Industries website.
House prices expected to fall in 2023
Sydney: Rising interest rates are expected to cause house prices to fall 10 per cent in 2023, according to new research by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia.
News Business Reporter Edward Boyd discussed the issue.
“Commonwealth Bank expect the Reserve Bank to start lifting the cash rate next year,” Mr Boyd told media.
“And they expect the cash rate to continue rising to reach 1.25 per cent at the end of 2023.”
Thousands Jobs for young people in Australia
Canberra: Financial Services Minister Jane Hume says she thinks it is an extraordinary time of opportunity, particularly for young people in Australia, to “forge their way ahead” in a career they may have never thought of before.
“We actually said last week that there are around 280,000 jobs ready and waiting to be filled by Christmas for anyone that wants to work,” Ms Hume told media.
“We’d encourage all Australians to take this once in a generation opportunity to get their way into the workforce – find themselves a better and a higher paying job.”
Build back stronger in Western Sydney with SBS
Sydney: An Albanese Labor Government will commission a feasibility study into the relocation of the Sydney-based headquarters and studios of the Special Broadcasting Service (SBS) from Artarmon to Western Sydney, alongside the provision of a multi-purpose space for content creation and public use.
To build the inclusive Australia of tomorrow, you need to start planning today.
Western Sydney is one of Australia’s most diverse and fast-growing areas and SBS is Australia’s most diverse multilingual, multiplatform media organisation.
When former Prime Minister Paul Keating opened the SBS building in Artarmon over 25 years ago, it was to help mainstream SBS by moving it closer to other TV networks, bringing radio and TV under the one roof for a complete service.
The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the vital relevance and power of SBS in reaching multilingual, multicultural and First Nations audiences, including in Western Sydney which faced some of the strictest lockdowns.
In contrast, Labor is committed to growing the SBS, Australia’s trusted multicultural broadcaster, and utilising its value as a platform.
Labor wants to leverage Australia’s investment in the Australia of tomorrow and is committed to seeing both SBS and Western Sydney thrive in the 21st Century.
New collaboration to give homes to women at risk
Sydney: The NSW Government is partnering with housing providers to ensure women at risk of homelessness have a place to call home, as part of the Government’s commitment to supporting families and protecting communities.
Minister for Water, Housing and Property Melinda Pavey said the NSW Land and Housing Corporation (LAHC) has identified nine locations across Greater Sydney where women at risk of homelessness is growing.
“LAHC will be building boarding homes specifically designed for women at risk of homelessness in Seven Hills, Camden, Airds, Revesby, Merrylands, Peakhurst, Penrith, and Maroubra,” Mrs Pavey said.
“The NSW Government is taking action to support and protect women and we are proud to partner with the community housing sector to deliver fit-for-purpose places where these vulnerable women can call home.
“Older women are the largest demographic in need of homes, and we as a Government have a responsibility to respond to that growing need. That’s why we are continuing to find solutions to protect people in need.”
LAHC will be working with the Women’s Housing Company (WHC), a community housing provider focused on providing housing for women, throughout the design process.
LAHC Chief Executive Mick Cassel said this will result in the best outcomes for future tenants.