The first Christmas refugees

Many thanks for your support for Social Policy Connections during 2011. As the daily news reminds us, there are many issues of concern, and, though we are a very modest size, we join many others in the conviction that we can – and must – do better to improve human wellbeing.

The Christmas story is not a children’s fantasy. It is a tale of endurance and survival against attempts to kill the child, forcing this little family to flee as refugees. Christians believe it is God’s astonishing act of solidarity and commitment in humanity’s struggle against poverty and injustice. It is a commitment which flows still through everyone of goodwill. This is indeed reason for our hope.

Photo istock

Re-thinking capitalism

By Bruce Duncan

capitalism isn't workingThe continuing economic trauma in Europe and elsewhere is forcing people to question our capitalist economic system, especially its moral basis. Serious economists are challenging the notion of growth for its own sake. The risks of unprecedented climate change and ecological issues are deeply troubling.

Click HEREfor the complete article.

Photo Capitalism isn’t working; another world is possible Courtesy AndyRobertsPhotos, Flickr cc

Debating Pell on climate change

geoff lacey at spc agm 24nov11In response to Cardinal Pell’s talk on climate change, delivered in London in October, Mr Geoff Lacey argued that the Cardinal’s view is “deeply flawed… and is at odds with the tradition of Christian social teaching”. Speaking at the SPC forum on 24 November, he said that Cardinal Pell and other climate sceptics “greatly exaggerate the degree of uncertainty. In fact, the greenhouse effect, in which carbon dioxide and other gases tend to warm the earth, is not in doubt, but established science… What is in doubt is the degree of future warming”.

Geoff Lacey’s full address is available HERE.

Photo Geoff Lacey at the SPC AGM

Resolving the asylum-seeker debacle

People who flee to Australia seeking asylum continue to suffer severely in detention in remote areas of this country. While some women and children continue to be released into the community on bridging visas, over 4000 other men, women, and children remain in detention centres. Mental health experts have warned for years about the trauma caused to asylum-seekers. The organisation which runs health services in detention centres, International Health & Medical Services, complained that it had inadequate funding to deal with the ‘surge’ in serious mental health issues of detainees.

Click HEREfor the complete article.

Photo courtesy Meanest Indian, Flickr cc

 

Good SPC report card for 2011

Reporting back to members of Social Policy Connections at its AGM on 24 November, the President, Mr Peter Whiting, reviewed the year’s achievements. Members endorsed his report, and re-elected the Management Committee for a further 12 months.

Click HERE for the complete report.

Photo SPC President, Mr Peter Whiting at SPC’s 2011 AGM

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