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Keywords: Social Justice

  • AUSTRALIA

    Why our defamation laws are no longer fit for purpose

    • Cristy Clark
    • 10 November 2021
    7 Comments

    Peter Dutton has recently argued that funds for defamation actions should be a ‘workplace entitlement’ for Members of Parliament (MPs). I’d like to repeat that another way: the Honorable Peter Dutton, Commonwealth Minister for Defence, would like the taxpayer to fund MPs to sue members of the Australian public for defamation.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Gone to graveyards every one

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 10 November 2021
    11 Comments

    Aficionados of United Nations Days and Weeks will know that this is the Week of Science and Peace. In the middle of it, perhaps deliberately and certainly paradoxically, sits Remembrance Day. Initially called Armistice Day, it marked the end of the First World War and of the industrial scale killing involved in it. The events of 1918 and what they might say about the relationship between war and science merit reflection today.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    When love raises its head on the shop floor

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 04 November 2021
    6 Comments

    In large organisations love hardly rates a mention. Mission statements highlight care, duty, responsibility and friendliness, but not love. Love is generally seen as an interrupter, combustible, something to fence in with protocols and professional standards, and for HR to monitor. When Pope Benedict XVI devoted an Encyclical to the place of love in public relationships, people were surprised. His argument is worth revisiting.

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  • RELIGION

    The careful choreography of plenary

    • Francis Sullivan
    • 25 October 2021
    15 Comments

    The First Assembly of the Fifth Plenary Council held few surprises. The program made sure of it. Proceedings were carefully choreographed and the agenda was deliberately anodyne. It took several days before participants found their feet. The upshot was a week devoid of strategic focus.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    The right to a healthy environment

    • Cristy Clark
    • 21 October 2021
    2 Comments

    On 8 October, at its 48th session, the United Nations Human Rights Council formally adopted a resolution recognising the human right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment. It emphasises that ‘environmental degradation, climate change and unsustainable development constitute some of the most pressing and serious threats to the ability of present and future generations to enjoy human rights, including the right to life’.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The sacked professor Ridd's freedom of speech

    • Frank Brennan
    • 18 October 2021
    5 Comments

    The High Court decision has been confusing for many people because it both upheld Ridd’s right to intellectual freedom and the university’s entitlement to sack him for breaches during disciplinary proceedings which had followed upon two wrongly argued censures. Basically, Ridd won on the point of intellectual freedom but he lost on the other aspects of his behaviour which had nothing to do with the exercise of intellectual freedom. 

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  • RELIGION

    Raising women’s voices

    • Tracy McEwan, Patricia Gemmell
    • 06 October 2021
    15 Comments

    Annabel Crabb’s ABC TV documentary series Ms Represented had us gasping, laughing and raging all at once. The series struck an achingly familiar chord as women from different political parties and generations voiced their common experience of sexism and misogyny in Australia’s parliament, elucidating just how hard it is for women to have a voice at the table in Australian institutions of power.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Nuclear submarines surface questions of government spending

    • Vincent Long Van Nguyen
    • 28 September 2021
    12 Comments

    The Australian Government’s decision to buy nuclear-powered submarines has brought to the surface once again big questions around how governments should spend money, particularly during a pandemic. The Government has ditched a $90 billion plan for French submarines in favour of even more expensive boats from the United Kingdom or the United States.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The Mercy Sisters of the Pilbara

    • Paul Cleary
    • 21 September 2021
    1 Comment

    In the late 1970s, two Mercy sisters answered a call to work with Aboriginal people, and they chose a place in the Pilbara region of Western Australia that had a notorious reputation. Sisters Bernadette Kennedy and Bernadine Daly arrived in the largely Aboriginal town of Roebourne in Australia’s north-west in mid-1978 to see if they were needed. They quickly discovered that in a town ‘awash with alcohol’ there was great need.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Clive Palmer, COVID, and the WA Border

    • Frank Brennan
    • 09 September 2021
    5 Comments

    Clive Palmer is one Australian wanting to smash border restrictions during this time of pandemic. He is threatening to go back to the High Court seeking recognition of his right as an Australian citizen to travel freely between the States. In particular he claims the right to enter Western Australia where he has significant mining interests. 

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  • RELIGION

    Valuing human life

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 09 September 2021
    23 Comments

    In recent weeks the value of human life has become a topic of public conversation in different contexts. Proposed legislation on abortion and assisted dying has continued to focus attention on it. Debate about loosening COVID restrictions has also balanced the risk of death from the disease with risks to health and economic welfare from lockdowns. In Afghanistan the victory of the Taliban has again raised questions about the morality of the war and the killing involved by both sides.

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  • FAITH DOING JUSTICE

    Our moral duty towards Afghan refugees

    • Vincent Long Van Nguyen
    • 30 August 2021
    9 Comments

    I was one of the boat people who escaped from South Vietnam. The escape happened after South Vietnam had fallen to the Vietnamese communist forces in 1975, and my world descended into total chaos with an international embargo, wars against China and Cambodia, forced collectivisation and the insidious spread of what were termed “re-education camps” - but were really communist gulags. My siblings and I grew up in a world of poverty, isolation, oppression and constant fear of what might happen to us or our loved ones.

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