The Greens are warning that the NSW government's plan to privatise more than $600 million of TAFE funds, scheduled to start on the first of January next year, will have devastating consequences for students, teachers and the community.
Greens NSW MP John Kaye said: "The so-called 'Smart and Skilled' market will dump TAFE into competition against low-cost, low-quality training companies that operate for profit.
Greens MP and NSW Environment Spokesperson called on the Government to save the Leard Forest today in Sydney alongside Greenpeace, GetUp and frontline environmental activists. The Government is allowing Whitehaven Coal to clear land during winter months, when many native animals are hibernating and more vulnerable. Dr Faruqi said at the rally:
"The Greens are standing shoulder to shoulder with the community to stop Whitehaven's destructive coal mine at Maules Creek.
"A few months ago I had the privilege to camp at Maules Creek with inspiring front line activists and to see for myself what was at stake in defending biodiversity at the Leard State Forest.
"Biodiversity is not a commodity that can be traded or offset. It must be protected from irreversible damage.
NSW Greens MP David Shoebridge has welcomed today’s announcement by the CFMEU to place a ‘Green Ban’ on Thompson Square, Windsor in response to the Government’s approved controversial Windsor Bridge Replacement Project.
Last year the NSW Government made a last-minute Christmas Eve announcement that it would approve the project despite assessments made by the Department of Planning’s independent experts indicating the damage it will cause to local heritage, and that there is very little economic justification for the project to go ahead.
The local community has been strongly opposed to the project since it was proposed by the government, in particular due to its impact on Thompson Square, Australia’s oldest town square and a precious part of Australia’s history.
The Greens NSW spokesperson on mining Jeremy Buckingham has written to Police Minister Mike Gallacher asking for the reasons behind his ministerial decision to request the closure of both the Leard State Forest and the Pilliga Forest near Narrabri, saying he was concerned that the decision was a political favour to resource companies Whitehaven and Santos.
"I've written to the Police Minister asking for an explanation as to why he has made a ministerial request to close these forests for extended periods of time and whether it was made at the request of the resource companies," said Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham.
Greens NSW Senator Lee Rhiannon is currently at a massive protest at Leard State Forest in North West NSW where 15 machines have been immobilised and work on the controversial Maules Creek mine has been prevented.
150 people, including traditional owners, local farmers and environmentalists, have gathered to call on Environment Minister Greg Hunt to stop the development of the mine.
“Today's action demonstrates people power and resilience. The number of people willing to give up their time to prevent the Maules Creek Mine from going ahead is inspiring.” Senator Rhiannon said.
Commenting on the death of 4 000 sheep at sea last August, Greens animal welfare spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said:
"The Department of Agriculture (DAFF) should explain to the Australian public why a disaster of such magnitude has been kept a secret for the past five months.
"DAFF's silence on this horrific incident serves nothing but to protect the exporter Livestock Shipping Services (LSS) from bad publicity.
"Five months later DAFF still have not applied any penalties, let alone revoked or suspended LSS's trading licence.