Australia

Australia: Melbourne’s coronavirus outbreak continues to spread despite localised lockdown

By Oscar Grenfell, 4 July 2020

It only took days for the Victorian Labor government’s lockdown of ten Melbourne postcodes to be exposed as an ineffectual and punitive response to the rise in infections.

“Deep cleaning” in Australian schools: Image and reality

By Carolyn Kennett, 4 July 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic spread, governments promised thoroughly cleaned classrooms, but school cleaners have neither the resources nor hours to conduct the necessary cleaning.

SEP (Australia) July 7 online lecture

A new period of socialist revolution and the tasks of the Fourth International

4 July 2020

The lecture will outline the contemporary significance of the Trotskyist movement’s fight for socialism internationalism, amid a breakdown of capitalism and an upsurge of the class struggle.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

4 July 2020

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

The Assange precedent in action

Australian journalist threatened with prosecution for exposing war crimes in Afghanistan

By Oscar Grenfell, 3 July 2020

Like Assange, Australian Broadcasting Corporation journalist Dan Oakes faces prosecution for publishing evidence of war crimes in Afghanistan.

Hundreds of jobs axed as Australian Broadcasting Corporation imposes government cuts

By Richard Phillips, 3 July 2020

ABC management, in line with federal government and Murdoch media demands, is imposing another round of job cuts at the public broadcaster.

Australia’s largest airline Qantas axes 6,000 jobs to slash costs

By Terry Cook, 2 July 2020

Like its competitors internationally, Qantas is seizing on the COVID-19 pandemic to carry out a further pro-business restructuring of its operations.

Australian state Labor government’s police arrest refugee protesters

By Michael Smith, 2 July 2020

Governments continue to condemn protests and invoke the COVID-19 pandemic in an effort to silence dissent, even as they accelerate the reopening of the economy.

Australian cancer testing declines during coronavirus pandemic

By Clare Bruderlin, 1 July 2020

The lack of personal protective equipment in hospitals and shortages of masks, gloves and sanitiser available to the public have forced many people to put off appointments.

Australian government unveils military boost aimed against China

By Mike Head, 1 July 2020

Over the next decade, $575 billion will be spent on the armed forces, including an expanded $270 billion military hardware buildup, featuring “long-range strike capabilities.”

Australian state government locks down Melbourne working class suburbs

By Oscar Grenfell, 1 July 2020

While measures are required to contain the coronavirus, the lockdown will disproportionately affect workers, the unemployed and the poor.

Australian COVID-19 surge continues in Victoria

By Martin Scott, 30 June 2020

Almost 300 coronavirus cases have been detected in the state over the past seven days.

Australian court backs secret trial on East Timor bugging exposure

By Mike Head, 30 June 2020

The closed-door proceedings seek to protect the entire network of spy agencies involved in the escalating US confrontation with China.

Australian Labor Party intent on ousting MP from parliament over “Chinese agent” claims

By Mike Head, 29 June 2020

Labor wants to remove Shaoquett Moselmane despite his denunciation of his “political lynching.”

Australian paper mill workers locked out as company moves to slash wages

By Steve Strietberg, 29 June 2020

The company wants a two-tier wage system, with 15 percent lower pay rates for new employees.

Legal settlement lets Australian military off the hook over PFAS pollution

By Patrick Davies, 29 June 2020

The settlement will see victims share just $126 million of a $212 million payout and releases the Defence Department from any further claim over financial loss.

Australia’s US-backed anti-China witch hunt escalates with raid on MP’s home

By Mike Head, 27 June 2020

The operation is another step towards branding anyone who challenges Australia's involvement in the US offensive against Beijing as a “foreign agent.”

SEP (Australia) June 30 online lecture

The 1985–86 split with the WRP and the renaissance of Marxism

27 June 2020

The split ranks among the most crucial strategic experiences of the Trotskyist movement and the international working class.

Indian and Pakistani health workers strike over coronavirus safety; Australia Paper maintenance workers locked out

Workers Struggles: Asia and Australia

27 June 2020

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Australian military deployed in Melbourne as COVID-19 infection rate surges

By Martin Scott, 26 June 2020

The daily rate of new cases in Victoria is at its highest since early April.

Australian unions support Queensland Labor government’s public sector wage freeze

By Gary Alvernia, 26 June 2020

The pay “deferral” sets a new precedent for exploiting the COVID-19 emergency to intensify the ongoing corporate and government attack on the living and working conditions of workers.

Australia: Coronavirus infections spike in Melbourne’s working class suburbs

By Patrick O’Connor, 24 June 2020

Victoria’s Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton declared that the state was at a “tipping point.”

Australian police assault Aboriginal man with taser

By Oscar Grenfell, 24 June 2020

The victim of the unprovoked assault has been charged with intimidating the police while the officers involved have not even been stood down.

Ten years since the US-backed coup against Australian Labor PM

By Mike Head, 24 June 2020

Literally overnight, a handful of factional warlords, including US “protected sources,” engineered Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s ouster, entirely behind the backs of the population.

Australian High Court rules tear-gassed youth detainees entitled to damages

By Martin Scott, 23 June 2020

Little has changed at the infamous Don Dale Youth Detention Centre since the high-profile 2014 incident.

Australian government steps up attack on university students and workers

By Mike Head, 22 June 2020

Assisted by the role of the unions, the government is seeking to further transform universities into vocational businesses, churning out “job-ready graduates.”

Australian university lecturers voice concerns about their conditions and the role of the NTEU

By our correspondent, 22 June 2020

“I was just stunned that the union did not even ask us if we wanted to negotiate a deal.”

Julian Assange’s fiancé calls on the Australian government to secure his freedom

By Oscar Grenfell, 22 June 2020

The “60 Minutes” program was the first substantive examination of Assange’s plight by the Australian media since the coronavirus pandemic began.

Australian COVID-19 cases increase as governments ease restrictions

By Martin Scott, 20 June 2020

For the first time since May 20, more than 100 positive tests were recorded in a seven-day period.

Joblessness reaches Great Depression levels in Australia

By Mike Head, 20 June 2020

The rate of youth unemployment and underemployment would be a staggering 48 percent if everyone who had lost their job was counted.

India: Bihar rural health workers demonstrate to defend jobs; Coimbatore textile workers protest over pay cuts

Workers Struggles: Asia and Australia

20 June 2020

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Pandemic’s negative impact on Australian scientific research future could last decades

By John Mackay, 19 June 2020

Research in the university sector is expected to decrease by at least $3 billion in 2020 due to the pandemic.

Australian government alleges cyber-attack to ramp-up provocations against China

By Oscar Grenfell, 19 June 2020

Prime Minister Scott Morrison failed to provide any evidence of a cyber-attack, but the media rushed to proclaim that China was responsible.

Pandemic’s negative impact on Australian scientific research future could last decades

By John Mackay, 19 June 2020

Research in the university sector is expected to decrease by at least $3 billion in 2020 due to the pandemic.

SEP (Australia) June 23 online lecture

The ICFI and the war against Pabloism

19 June 2020

The lecture will review the international political context of the emergence of Pabloism, a national-opportunist tendency within the Fourth International.

Australian pseudo-left groups protect university union from revolt against pay-cutting plans

By a correspondent, 18 June 2020

University workers, in partnership with students, need to construct new rank-and-file organisations that are totally independent of the NTEU apparatus.

Membership-rigging exposes Australian Labor Party’s rot

By Mike Head, 18 June 2020

The sheer size of the latest branch stacking operations points to a deep crisis in the Labor and trade union apparatus.

Australian PM outlines bipartisan austerity offensive

By Oscar Grenfell, 17 June 2020

The government is winding back meagre relief measures introduced during the pandemic and intensifying an assault on working class jobs and conditions.

Aboriginal professor awarded an “Order of Australia” promotion

By Mike Head, 17 June 2020

How did Marcia Langton, who began her political life in the 1970s as a leader of the Communist League, become the beneficiary of a Queen’s Honour alongside ex-Prime Minister Tony Abbott?

Australian police allegedly threatened Sydney protesters with sound weapon

By Oscar Grenfell, 16 June 2020

Despite police denials, footage clearly indicates that NSW police were in possession of an LRAD device known for its use against demonstrations in the US.

Parents speak out against rushed re-opening of schools in Australia

By Sue Phillips and Kaye Tucker, 16 June 2020

The complicity of the education trade unions has left parents to express their concerns through social media, establishing Facebook pages and petitions.

Reject Australian universities-NTEU job and pay cuts!

By the Committee for Public Education and the International Youth and Students for Social Equality, 15 June 2020

Despite intense opposition to the cuts among university workers, the trade unions are collaborating with the university managements to push through ballots to impose them.

Massive police display of force against Australian protests

By Mike Head, 13 June 2020

A wall of police manned barriers around Sydney Town Hall, preventing demonstrators from continuing to join the global protests against police violence.

True History of the Kelly Gang: Little resemblance to the real story

By Jason Quill and Richard Phillips, 13 June 2020

Justin Kurzel’s film is the 16th about the late 19th century Australian bushranger and anti-establishment outlaw.

India: Telangana coal mine workers strike against privatisation; Queensland hospital workers walkout over pay freeze

Workers Struggles: Asia and Australia

13 June 2020

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Australian PM calls for mass arrests at protests against police violence

By Oscar Grenfell, 12 June 2020

Echoing Donald Trump, Scott Morrison declared that demonstrations had been “hijacked by left-wing radicals” who were pursuing “their own political agendas.”

Police shoot dead mentally ill man in Melbourne, Australia

By Karen Maxwell, 11 June 2020

The man’s death marks another incident where police have killed someone suffering a mental health crisis.

Pandemic intensifies growing mental health crisis in Australia

By Margaret Rees, 11 June 2020

The government’s promised spending displays the official contempt for those being devastated by mass unemployment and under-employment.

SEP (Australia) June 16 online lecture

The founding of the Fourth International

11 June 2020

The lecture will outline the immense contemporary relevance of Leon Trotsky’s establishment of the world party of socialist revolution in 1938.

Australia Post restructure threatens over 2,000 jobs

By Oscar Grenfell, 10 June 2020

The overhaul is part of a broader pro-business restructuring across the economy being enforced by the trade unions.

Australian government ending COVID-19 childcare scheme

By Oscar Grenfell, 9 June 2020

The abrupt announcement is part of a broader roll-back of limited relief measures introduced in response to the pandemic.

Defying government threats, thousands join Australian protests against police violence

By Oscar Grenfell, 8 June 2020

Over 100,000 people demonstrated across the country, despite threats of large fines and an attempted ban of the Sydney rally.

Australian protesters speak out: “The class systems need to be abolished”

By our reporters, 8 June 2020

The demonstrations were “a great show of people power and it’s a great show of how the world should move forward.”

India and Australia sign military pact amid tense border conflict with China

By Mike Head, 8 June 2020

The Modi-Morrison “summit” occurred just two days after US President Trump reiterated his support for India’s confrontation with China.

Australian governments try to block demonstrations against police violence

By Oscar Grenfell, 6 June 2020

The bans and police threats are outright attacks on the right to protest, a basic democratic right, aimed at establishing a precedent for suppressing mounting social and political opposition.

Australian government hands more cash to big business as recession deepens

By Mike Head, 6 June 2020

The slump began before the main COVID-19 pandemic restrictions commenced, and has led to the greatest loss of livelihoods since the 1930s Great Depression.

More Australian war crimes exposed in Afghanistan

By Jason Quill, 6 June 2020

The exposure of Ziauddin’s killing highlights the years of coverups by successive Australian governments, both Liberal-National and Labor, of military abuses in the Middle East.

India-wide protests by military armament and power industry workers; Australian airport workers demand JobKeeper pay

Workers Struggles: Asia and Australia

6 June 2020

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Australia: NSW government pushes public sector wage freeze

By Martin Scott, 5 June 2020

The government is now asking the Industrial Relations Commission to deny nurses, teachers, paramedics, and other essential workers a promised 2.5 percent wage increase.

Hundreds of jobs axed as News Corp Australia shuts regional and suburban newspapers

By Richard Phillips, 5 June 2020

The Murdoch-owned company, like other media conglomerates, has seized on the COVID-19 crisis to drastically restructure operations and drive up profits.

NTEU helps Australian universities escalate job and wage cuts

By Mike Head, 5 June 2020

University managements are exploiting the union’s stifling of university workers’ outrage and opposition.

Nissan confirms job cuts as strike against Spanish plant closures continues

By Alejandro López, 5 June 2020

Thousands of Nissan workers, their families and sympathisers are striking, protesting and blocking roads to protest the automaker’s decision to shut down its Barcelona plant.

Anger over US police assault on Australian journalists in Washington DC

By Oscar Grenfell, 4 June 2020

Had the attack occurred in a country such as China or Iran, the muted response from the Australian political establishment would undoubtedly have been very different.

Australian inquest says “grossly deficient” safety caused death of Anglo American mine worker

By Terry Cook, 4 June 2020

The coronial inquest into the Grasstree Mine workers’ death in 2014 is a damning indictment of Anglo American safety standards.

Australian police officers assault Aboriginal boy in Sydney

By Oscar Grenfell, 3 June 2020

The widespread anger provoked by the attack has prompted nervousness from the political establishment, under conditions of mass protests internationally against police violence.

Australian schools affected by new coronavirus clusters

By Patrick Kelly, 3 June 2020

The cases have exposed state and federal government claims, both Labor and Liberal, that teachers, staff and children are safe to return to school.

Oppose the premature lifting of COVID-19 safety restrictions!

By the Socialist Equality Party (Australia), 3 June 2020

The Socialist Equality Party opposes the profit-driven “back-to-work” campaign as the global COVID-19 pandemic worsens and fresh outbreaks appear across the country.

Thousands rally in Perth, Australia against police violence

By Oscar Grenfell, 2 June 2020

The protest was a rebuke of Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s declaration that “There’s no need to import things happening in other countries here to Australia.”

Australia’s richest “Top 20” soar further in wealth during pandemic

By Mike Head, 2 June 2020

The results illustrate the immense concentration of wealth since governments bailed out the financial elite after the 2008–09 economic breakdown.

Australian bushfire inquiry examines the terrible impact of smoke inhalation

By John Mackay, 2 June 2020

The number of deaths caused by smoke was more than ten times the number killed directly by the bushfires.

Australian university union pushes through pay-cutting deal at Western Sydney

By our correspondent, 1 June 2020

The NTEU prevented genuine discussion, refused to circulate opposing resolutions and backed management threats.

Australia’s “national cabinet” declared permanent

By Oscar Grenfell, 30 May 2020

The purpose of the new body is to suppress widespread social and political opposition, and create the conditions for a further pro-business restructuring of the economy.

Indian autoworkers strike for COVID-19 safety measures; Thousands of Bangladeshi garment workers demonstrate

Workers Struggles: Asia and Australia

30 May 2020

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Financial press hails Australian government’s union-employer offensive against workers

By Oscar Grenfell, 29 May 2020

The unions have committed to a sweeping pro-business overhaul of workplace conditions and industrial relations on the pretext of the pandemic.

Australian university union’s national deal collapses in face of widespread opposition

By Mike Head, 28 May 2020

Despite its debacle, the NTEU will intensify its collaboration with university managements to try and impose deep cuts to jobs, wages and conditions.

Oppose the rush to reopen Australian schools! Form safety action committees of teachers and staff!

By the Committee for Public Education (CFPE), 28 May 2020

At stake is not just the immediate public safety concerns in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, but the future of the education system.

Australian PM launches union-employer offensive against workers

By Oscar Grenfell, 27 May 2020

The unions have signalled their readiness to enforce a corporate drive to exploit the pandemic to mount a major assault on jobs, wages and conditions.

Socialist Equality Party (Australia) to hold online lectures on history of Trotskyism

27 May 2020

Amid the breakdown of capitalism triggered by the coronavirus pandemic, the lectures will outline the contemporary significance of the Trotskyist movement’s decades-long fight for a socialist and internationalist perspective.

US threatens to “disconnect” Australia if it strays from conflict with China

By Mike Head, 26 May 2020

Pompeo’s bullying intervention is part of an intensifying campaign by Washington to confront China economically and militarily.

Online meeting reveals union complicity in attacks on Australia Post workers

By Jim Franklin, 26 May 2020

Union officials prevented workers from speaking or moving motions, in a warning that they are preparing to enforce the management’s sweeping pro-business restructure.

Australian governments rush to end lockdowns in line with business demands

By Oscar Grenfell, 26 May 2020

Thousands of students and teachers are returning to schools, crowded public transport services are operating and millions of workers are being herded back onto the job.

Australian government’s JobKeeper fraud starts to unravel

By Mike Head, 25 May 2020

From the start, the government’s claims of “saving six million jobs” were always patent lies.

Australian governments fully reopen schools despite intense opposition

By Erika Zimmer, 23 May 2020

The danger of sending up to a million children back full-time in New South Wales during the COVID-19 pandemic is compounded by the public transport crisis.

Indian police detain thousands of sacked migrant workers; Pakistani health workers demand unpaid wages and allowances

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

23 May 2020

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Australian unions back pay cuts for fast food workers

By Oscar Grenfell, 22 May 2020

The attack on some of the lowest-paid workers, on the pretext of the coronavirus pandemic, is a precedent for a broader pro-business restructuring.

Australian government falsely claims credit for global COVID-19 inquiry

By Mike Head, 21 May 2020

Australia’s push was obviously part of a US drive to demonise China and the World Health Organisation.

Australia: Twelve fast food outlets closed in Melbourne after coronavirus outbreak

By Martin Scott, 21 May 2020

Around 1,000 McDonald’s workers have been stood down, and hundreds are in self-isolation.

Australian universities exploit NTEU deal to slash facilities, jobs and conditions

By Mike Head, 20 May 2020

The employers are taking full advantage of the union’s role in suppressing the outrage of university workers for six weeks while it pursued backroom talks.

Australian secret interrogation powers to extend to “foreign interference”

By Mike Head, 19 May 2020

ASIO will have the power to forcibly question 14-year-olds and anyone deemed connected to a “foreign” organisation.

Australian Committee for Public Education holds online forum on COVID-19 and the universities crisis

By our correspondent, 19 May 2020

Academics, university professional staff, school teachers, TAFE employees and university students joined a critical discussion.

Australian government heightens trade conflict with China

By Mike Head, 18 May 2020

Successive Australian governments have been in the forefront of imposing tariffs and other restrictions on imports from China.

“The idea of school and teaching right now fills me with anxiety, dread and stress... it usually fuels me with joy, excitement and happiness”

Australian teachers speak out about unsafe schools and excessive workloads

By Sue Phillips, 18 May 2020

A survey of 10,000 teachers reveals that fewer than one in four felt safe working at schools at the end of term one and 60 percent had high levels of anxiety about returning to work.

Australian governments exploit mass unemployment to coerce workers into unsafe workplaces

By Mike Head, 16 May 2020

Nearly half a million workers dropped out of the workforce in April, yet unemployment and underemployment still reached a record total of 19.9 percent.

Committee For Public Education online public forum

The COVID-19 pandemic and the crisis in the universities

16 May 2020

The CFPE invites university workers, students and teachers to attend its online forum to discuss the pandemic and the deep crisis in the universities, both in Australia and internationally.

Thousands of migrant workers demonstrate across India; Tamil Nadu cleaners demand COVID-19 protection

Workers Struggles: Asia and Australia

16 May 2020

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Australian Labor Party leader revives bogus “fair go” call

By Mike Head, 14 May 2020

Albanese’s post-COVID-19 “vision statement” came as workers are being ordered back into workplaces despite the Australian government saying further outbreaks are inevitable.

Australian pseudo-left groups try to rescue university union from outrage over sellout deal

By Carolyn Kennett and Mike Head, 14 May 2020

The NTEU’s deal with the employers exposes the desperate efforts of pseudo-left groups to prevent a revolt by university workers and students against the union.

Australian university union agrees to unprecedented pay and job cuts

By Mike Head, 13 May 2020

The agreement shatters the NTEU’s claim that it volunteered sacrifices of wages and conditions to “protect jobs” from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Australian Labor Party exploits pandemic to scapegoat foreign workers

By Max Newman, 12 May 2020

Labor’s call for immigration cuts lines up directly behind the drive by governments around the globe, personified by US President Trump, to promote toxic nationalism.

Australian intelligence sources alarmed by US “Wuhan lab” claim

By Mike Head, 11 May 2020

The primary fear in these ruling circles is that the assertions are so unreliable that they discredit the US confrontation with China, in which Australia is on the frontline.