Australian Attitudes changing

Lily Gobran

Ruth Griffin Representative of Australian Institute of health and welfare shares the findings from a recent study.

From the recent report it is evident that Australians attitudes and perceptions relating to alcohol, tobacco and illicit drug use is making a change.

The latest report looked at 2400 Australians aged 14 and up and surveyed their alcohol, tobacco and illicit drug use. The findings showed fewer teenagers are drinking alcohol which is a progressive change.

“Fewer teenagers are drinking alcohol which is a plus. 28 per cent were drinking in 2013 and its gone down now to 18 per cent,” Ruth Griffin Said.

It also showed that the younger generation are experimenting with alcohol and tobacco at an older age. In 2001, 14 was the average age and now it is 16. It is clear that the latest research on the negative and harmful effects that alcohol and tobacco are causing are deterring the populations and especially the younger generation.

“Research and exposure to the harmful effects and how they contribute to your life later on is now being educated,” She said.

Ms. Griffin believes although the percentage of Australians drinking is fewer. she Is sure the general population are never going to stop, but they will be drinking more responsible and being aware of the harmful effects they can cause.

“It is part of Australian life, but I think we will advance in our knowledge on how to consume alcohol more responsibility” she said.

The report shows the changes in illicit drug use.

It is shown that the number of people using the illicit drug ‘ice’ has risen, 22 per cent in 2010 to now 57 per cent in 2016.

It is evident that from this report conducted by the Australian Institute of health and welfare that there have been dramatic changes, and the Government are going to continue to implant polices to proceed to improve Australia wide.



Rise in young people becoming homeless

The number of young people becoming homeless in Sydney is increasing.

Lily Gobran a representative from City Of Sydney speaking at Sydney TAFE on June 9, said it was a major issue that is not only in Sydney but all across Australia.

Ms Gobran explained that young people sleeping on the streets/couch surfing is caused by many factors. They could be fleeing violence, have an addiction, mental illness, unemployed and one of the biggest factors, lack of affordable housing.

“You can’t solve homelessness without tackling housing supply. Without diverse mix of housing, people sleep rough are at risk of becoming entrenched in homelessness”

Ms Gobran also discussed how us as a community can help to minimise the number of people sleeping rough, through standing up and saying “its not acceptable to push our young people into poverty and disadvantage, as would be the outcome of the governments budget proposal for a six month waiting period to apply before young people receive income support.

“we also need to give people the tools to access education and training to enable them to contribute to, and benefit from, our economy”,

She spoke of the survey that was conducted.

“Out of 35 of the young people we interviewed on the streets, 40 per cent required housing with intensive support. 56 per cent require short term support and affordable housing and 4 per cent just require housing they can afford to exit homelessness.”

“The number of people sleeping rough across our city highlights the need for multiple agencies across all levels of government to work together to provide safe and secure shelter for all one of the most fundamental human needs” she said.



Sharks propose redevelopment of Seymour Shaw Park Miranda

Lily Gobran

NRL club, the Sutherland Sharks have proposed a 1.4m redevelopment of Seymour Shaw Park to the Sutherland shire council on April 18.

The proposed development was discussed at the Sutherland Shire Council meeting. SSFC are seeking the owner’s consent to lodge a Development Application to move forward with the redevelopment of the gymnasium, change rooms and clubhouse on the leased site at Seymour Shaw park, Miranda.

The proposed development application has a number of outstanding issues including impact on trees on the site.

“This proposal is currently in Pre-Application Discussion stage. Apart from the removal of a healthy gum tree, the other issues that needed to be addressed include the creation of stormwater flood plan to be prepared by a qualified stormwater engineer, an electrical inspection and evaluation which needs to be conducted by the power provider and lastly, Council required detailed plans regarding the quality of designs and finishes as well as details of pedestrian access to comply with Australian standards.” Council spokesmen said

Residents of The Sutherland Shire seem to be supporting the idea of a redevelopment, stating that the Park is overdue for a rebuild and upgrade.

“From what I understand it’s an improvement to some pretty ordinary facilities which is much needed by Sutherland Shire Football Club. I’m confident that if the removal of three or four trees is the only stumbling block, that will be rectified very quickly and things will press on, as they should. There is ample area around the Seymour Shaw precinct to plant new trees. A couple of trees should not be difficult.” Michael P.J

The SSF’C has leased Field 1 at the Seymour Shaw Park from the council for several decades now. In the 2000’s they installed upgraded floodlighting and a synthetic football field. Although, with the upgraded facilities they will also need to consider addressing the issue of parking and traffic control in the area.

“That facility had remained unchanged since I was a child so it’s well overdue for a rebuild and upgrade. My kids play sport so I’m usually there on weekends. Better parking is also desperately needed for that area. It’s pretty crazy on a Saturday.”, Vanessa Dadley, 52. said

To lodge the Development Application, the SSF’C needs to address the outstanding issues raised in the pre development, guarantee there will be no financial impacts on the council and that the council is satisfied and ensured the development is financially viable.

10 years on and no Madeleine

Lily Gobran

A decade since 3-year-old Madeleine McCann went missing on May 3 2007 in Portugal an investigator has proposed a new theory for her disappearance.

Andrea Smith, speaking at Sydney TAFE College on May 5, said it was possible that Madeleine was moved by a shipping container and may now be living in Australia where she was allegedly sighted.

The ship was named Robert Rickmers INO9236444 and departed May 7 from Barcelona. The dates and places Madeleine was reported seen coordinated with the location of the ship that left Barcelona few days after she vanished, from her hotel room in Portugal.

Ms Smith’s interest in the missing girl was sparked when her own son’s passport details were stolen.

“When I called to report it they told me my son had never had a passport and had never been a citizen,” she said.

“This shocked me and made me concerned on why would any evidence on him having a citizenship been deleted”.

The former New Zealander now living in Sydney began to track the movements of the cargo ship with sightings and concluded Madeleine may have been a victim of a child smuggling ring.

Over the past 10 years of Madeline’s disappearance there has been 8685 reported sighting of her across 101 countries and territories.

She also spoke of reports that just 72 hours after Madeleine vanished a woman mistook a British tourist for a man seemed impatiently waiting to meet outside a bar in Barcelona and asked: “Have you got her? Have you got the child?” The woman was described as being in her 30s with an Australian or New Zealand accent.

Still to this today Madeleine has not been found and many theories have been developed on what may have happened to her.

Echo chamber reverberates on Facebook


Facebook and other networking sites are controlling what we see and what we don’t according to a panel of experts on the ABCs Q&A program broadcasted on Monday night.

Clare Wardle, research director at First Draft News, said micro targeting used Facebook algorithms to send advertising or news stories to people based on what they have liked or shared in the past. This meant stories appeared on people’s newsfeeds based on their past preferences.

“It’s not really in Facebook’s interests to solve this because when we are in our echo chamber and we’re receiving information that makes us feel good, because it confirms our biases, we spend longer on Facebook, which means we see more ads.” She said

Terri Butler, Labor frontbencher discussed how news is now delivered by all different social media platforms not just papers. The echo chamber in media has been created by the way Facebook and other sites have altered what we see, whether it’s true or not.

“So, you can be getting 100% accurate stuff but it’s all this stuff that just confirms your own prejudices. So, if you’re only getting news that you’re interested in, that you already agree with, then that is, in and of itself, a problem even though it’s completely accurate”, she said