Brisbane: Dutton roof protesters cop $100 fines

Protesters who climbed onto the awning of Immigration Minister Peter Dutton's office have been fined.
21 Nov – Three women who reportedly cost taxpayers thousands of dollars by protesting on the roof of Immigration Minister Peter Dutton’s electoral office in Brisbane have been fined $100 each.

The trio scaled the roof of Mr Dutton’s office in Strathpine on November 2 to protest against the Coalition government’s proposed life-time ban on refugees arriving by boat.

Mr Dutton claimed at the time that police and emergency services would have spent $10,000 worth of resources “trying to get these idiots down from my roof”.

 

Auckland: Police and protesters clash at defence forum

Police are attempting to stop the protesters from crossing a blockade at the Viaduct Events Centre.

16 Nov – Police have clashed with protesters in Auckland as about 100 people demonstrate against an event they say is a “weapons expo”.

Demonstraters broke through barricades at the Viaduct Events Centre and staged a sit-in protest.

About 40 police officers were also at Wynyard Quarter to keep the protesters at bay.

Members of Auckland Peace Action have gathered to demonstrate against the annual conference of the New Zealand Defence Industry Association, which they describe as a weapons expo.

Protesters outside the annual conference of the New Zealand Defence Industry Association.

Protesters outside the annual conference of the New Zealand Defence Industry Association.

The defence forum is attended by arms dealers from all over the world.

The conference coincides with the arrival of a flotilla of warships from around the world, which have sailed into the Waitemata Harbour to join the New Zealand Navy’s 75th anniversary celebrations.

Police and protesters clash outside the annual defence forum in Auckland

Police and protesters clash outside the annual defence forum in Auckland.

Auckland Peace Action spokesperson Virginia Lambert told RNZ yesterday that the protesters were prepared to stay “until forcibly removed”.

“We’ve come together to oppose the celebration of war, the glorification of war,” she said.

Protesters at the annual defence forum

 

New Zealand Defence Industry Association chair Bernie Diver disputed the weapons expo term, saying it was an industry discussion – with government – to support and equip the New Zealand Defence Force.

There would be no military-style weapons at the event, he said.

“We’ve got a couple of high-end personal weapons, rifles, which are no different from what you’d see at a hunting store.”

He said the protesters’ actions and descriptions of the event were misguided.

“It is really just completely misguided and an embarrassment. I think overwhelmingly most New Zealanders, everyday New Zealanders, are incredibly proud of the work that our Defence Force does, and I know that the companies that work with Defence are incredibly proud.”

Mr Diver said 300 delegates were prevented from entering the conference, while around the same number were stuck inside the venue.

He said the conference would continue tomorrow and its venue may change.

The world’s largest nuclear arms manufacturer, Lockheed Martin, is the main sponsor of the forum.

The blockade at the weapons conference in Auckland.

Last year’s event in Wellington resulted in the arrest of 28 protesters.

WA: Youth prison guards angry after riot

13 Nov – The latest violent incident at Perth’s juvenile detention centre – the 10th in less than two-and-a-half months – has prompted the prison officers’ union to blame it on the introduction of a rehabilitation program imported from the US.

Seven detainees were involved – three who jumped out of a window trying to escape – causing an estimated $350,000 to $400,000 trashing their unit on Saturday afternoon.

Guards used flash bombs and chemical spray to control rioting detainees.

The youths barricaded themselves in, removed bricks from walls and threw them at staff, broke every reinforced glass window and pulled panelling and cabling out of the ceiling, says the Community and Public Sector Union.

The Banksia Hill centre was locked down for three hours.

There has been a rise in incidents, including an officer having his arm broken and elbow dislocated by a 17-year-old detainee in mid-September and a riot that caused $150,000 damage on September 1.

“We’ve been saying for some time now that detainees’ behaviour is getting worse, becoming more prone to violence and the staff – our members – are concerned about how long it will be before they end up in the firing line,” union WA secretary Toni Walkington told AAP.

The introduction of a more rehabilitation-focussed “Transformation Project” from the US and cultural change under Corrective Services commissioner James McMahon and deputy Rachael Green had been flawed and not properly explained to staff, she said, while other education and cognitive skills programs were cut.

The program was used in small prisons with handpicked detainees deemed suitable in the US, but at Banksia Hill was being applied to all 130-odd inmates, Ms Walkington said.

“It has not been made clear in concrete terms how all this fits together … our members have been asked to behave and conduct themselves differently without really knowing how that works in the whole system,” she said.

New rules introduced in July restricted officers’ ability restrain or conduct strip searches and spit hoods were banned after the ABC TV Four Corners program showing guards abusing children in Darwin.

There is anger between some officers and the Department of Corrective Services.

Those officers believe they are now unsafe at work because of a regime which Ms Green has said “puts the young person at the centre of everything”.

The department dismisses disgruntled guards as wanting to be allowed to go back to being prison officers rather than the softer-sounding “youth justice” or “group workers”, Ms Green wants them to be called.

Mr McMahon said in a statement that importantly no staff or young people were injured, the incident was contained to a small area and there was never any threat to security at Banksia Hill.

Corrective Services Minister Joe Francis said he was confident Mr McMahon had the right team managing Banksia Hill.

I’ve turned up there unannounced twice in the last two weeks, walked around without a panic button, without a duress button, without an escort, walked around while 50-odd kids were kicking the footy around and I felt safer there than I do in some parts of Australia,” he said.

Joondalup: Riot police called to stop music festival gatecrashers

26 Sept – Riot police helped security guards deal with rowdy revellers and fence jumpers at a Joondalup music festival yesterday.

A police spokesman said youths were involved in a “rolling blue” with security guards at the Listen Out festival at HBF Arena.

Police dogs and officers on horseback were sent to the venue to help with security after officers were contacted at 3pm.

It will be alleged that as police were moving on a crowd of 300, some began throwing objects at police officers.

Four people were arrested for allegedly assaulting three police officers and 15 move on notices were issued.

Police also received a complaint that windows had been damaged at the Joondalup Arena.

A 23-year-old man from Armadale, a 22-year-old woman from Kalamunda and a 20-year-old woman also from Kalamunda were charged with assaulting a public officer.

A 23-year-old Roleystone man was charged with disorderly behaviour.

There were at least 20 officers in riot gear near HBF Arena at 9pm.

The sold-out dance music festival features Rufus, Anderson .Paak, Ngaiire and A$AP Ferg.

Barwon: Prison prisoners go on strike

5 Sept – Prisoners at the state’s most secure jail have gone out on strike to demand more pay.

Some inmates at maximum security Barwon Prison want a better deal and have been refusing to work since last week.

Management at the jail, near Geelong, on Monday took action of their own, confining those refusing to work under new arrangements to their cells.

Journalists have been told the situation had been, at times, tense and that those prisoners locked down were being allowed out of their cells on a rotation basis.

Specialist officers from the security and emergency services group were on standby in case of trouble at the jail, which houses killers, armed robbers, terrorists and gangland figures.

Prisoners in Victoria are paid between $6.50 and $8.95 per day.

It is unclear who are the ringleaders of the Barwon industrial action.

Among the high-profile inmates are drug bosses Tony Mokbel, Frank Madafferi and Pasquale Barbaro and Matthew Johnson, the man who murdered underworld kingpin Carl Williams.

Opposition Corrections spokesman Edward O’Donohue said the strike raises questions about who was in control of our corrections system.

The Opposition’s corrections spokesman Edward O’Donohue said it was “unacceptable” that maximum security prisoners would “feel emboldened” to strike.

“The community expects prisoners to be focused on rehabilitation and paying their debt to the community, not to be taking strike action over pay rates in prison.”

“Under Daniel Andrews we’ve seen the worst prison riots in Victoria’s history, prisoners growing drugs in the prison gardens, increased escapes, increased deaths in custody and now prisoners going on strike,”.

“You have to question who is in control and who is running the Victorian corrections system.” said  O’Donohue.

Continue reading “Barwon: Prison prisoners go on strike”

Sydney: Solidarity actions for the Kalgoorlie uprising

kalgoIMG_45602 Sept – On the 30th of August 2016, following the murder of 14 year old Elijah Doughty by a white vigilante, Indigenous protesters fought back against their treatment by police and the racist ‘justice system’, smashing up the courthouse, 5 police vehicles, and injuring 12 cops.

In the days since then, some anarchists in Sydney undertook some small acts of solidarity. Hundreds of posters celebrating the rebellion was pasted up around train stations in various areas, a number of solidarity banners were tied to highway overpasses and a few dozen anti-colonial slogans were sprayed on Sydney walls.

The ‘justice system’ in this country, the police, courts and prisons are structures of capitalist and colonial domination whose purpose remain the dispossession, and oppression of Indigenous people.

The rebels in Kalgoorlie were right to attack these structures with all the rage and ferocity that they deserve. Such uprisings are a source of inspiration and joy to countess people who face daily harassment by cops on the streets or by screws in the prisons. When the flames of revolt break out we must fan them across this territory, by striking out at every manifestation of state authority, until every structure of colonialism is reduced to ashes.

kalgookalg

 

Kalgoorlie: Indigenous protesters attack court and cops

Elijah Doughty cop car flag

30 August – People smashed windows and jumped on police cars at a West Australian courthouse after a protest over the death of a local teenager turned violent.

A 55-year-old man, was due to appear at a court in Kalgoorlie, east of Perth, charged with the manslaughter of a 14-year-old Aboriginal boy, Elijah Doughty.

The boy’s body was found in nearby bushland on Monday morning.

But violent scenes erupted outside the courthouse with around 200 people smashing building windows with rocks and bottles.

During the violent clash 12 police officers were injured with one needing stitches, police say.

Five cars were smashed when the protest turned violent – but streets have returned to normal after police reinforcements turned up.

‘Several people have been taken into custody in relation to assault police and disorderly offences,’ police said.

According to The West Australian, family and friends of the teenager broke through the gates to the court before throwing rocks through windows.

Elijah Doughty riot cops banners

Others threw bottles at the building and the ABC reported a police officer had been injured during the clash.

A number of people were pictured standing on top of police cars, two of whom were clutching an Aboriginal flag after the boy’s death sparked tensions between local police and the Indigenous community.

Footage from the scene shows dozens of people marching through the streets outside the building, chanting and holding signs.

Elijah Doughty banner 1

Demonstrators were seen carrying Aboriginal flags, as well as banners that read: ‘We Want Justice’ and ‘All Lives Matter, Save Our Kids’.

The crowd could be heard chanting: ‘We want justice’ and ‘When do we want it? Now!’.

Elijah Doughty cop car smashed

Doughty’s aunt said the teenager was the third person in the family to die in recent weeks, and described her nephew as ‘a bit of a prankster’.

‘He was a very happy-go-lucky kid; he was never a bad kid,’ the woman told the Kalgoorlie Miner.

He was not a straight-A student but his circumstances were hard, he struggled at school but he had other issues to prioritise.’