Archive Month: August 2019
Aug 30 , 2019 / By :

One heart-wrenching note stood out among the thousands of tributes at Martin Place.

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“Love you mum. Love Sasha,” it read.

Barrister and mother-of-three Katrina Dawson died along with Lindt cafe manager Tori Johnson and gunman Man Haron Monis after the dramatic Sydney siege ended on Tuesday morning.

Four members of the Dawson family slowly made their way around the enormous Martin Place memorial on Thursday, painstakingly reading cards, taking photos and embracing each other.

The two men and two women became visibly upset when they discovered a colourful drawing clearly done by a young hand.

It depicted two figures with yellow-blonde hair, one tall and all pink, and the other in a blue dress with brown arms and pink legs.

Ms Dawson’s three children are under 10, with Sasha set to start school next year at Ascham in Sydney’s east.

Thousands of people flowed into the makeshift memorial site carrying flowers and tributes on Thursday, the third day since the end of the 16-hour ordeal.

A new section had to be added to accommodate the growing sea of flowers.

Mosman collar bomb victim Madeleine Pulver and her mother, Belinda, made a tearful visit to the shrine.

Senator Jacqui Lambie said Tasmanians, who were still “heartbroken” by the Port Arthur massacre nearly 20 years ago, were mourning with Sydneysiders.

“We know what’s it’s like,” she told AAP in Martin Place.

“It affects the whole nation.

“The last few days in Tasmania, it’s been a very harsh reminder and a reality check for us.”

Australian Human Rights Commission president Gillian Triggs said the incident raised questions over the granting of bail, access to firearms and mental health.

“How do we get these balances right in times of terror?” Professor Triggs asked while paying her respects.

Pakistani consul-general Abdul Aziz also laid flowers, expressing solidarity with the victims after his nation suffered a devastating school attack that killed at least 140 people.

Aug 30 , 2019 / By :

Australian retailers want items bought from overseas websites for as little as one cent to be subject to the GST.

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New Assistant Treasurer Josh Frydenberg says the federal government will consider whether to apply the tax to such low-value purchases as part of its white paper process in the new year.

Goods purchased online worth less than $1000 are currently not subject to the 10 per cent GST.

Local retailers, many of whom have online sales sites, complain it’s unfair because the loophole gives overseas retailers a price advantage.

Australian Retailers Association head Russell Zimmerman said the current GST-free threshold has “done nothing but damage our retail sector” and would like to see it scrapped altogether.

“I think it’s vital that the government does something on this very quickly,” he said on Friday.

“The threshold should be at least $30, but preferably down to zero.

“If it was brought down to zero, obviously all the books that come into Australia would be captured.

“But we’ve got some great online and bricks and mortar retailers.”

Myer chief executive Bernie Brookes welcomed the planned review, claiming current regulations are only serving to boost job numbers overseas – not locally.

Australia’s largest department store collects more than $300 million in GST every year, plus corporate tax.

“The problem is, we’re competing against people throughout the world that aren’t paying that level of GST and tax,” Mr Brookes told AAP.

“There’s no extra money in it for us if the GST is on or off – the reality is it goes to the government.

“And if the government is struggling to be able to balance things, then there’s a $1 billion in potential income through being able to put the GST online.

“The government at the moment are doing a really good job creating jobs – but they’re creating jobs in Birmingham, England, they’re creating jobs in Los Angeles, they’re creating jobs in China.

“They’re not creating jobs in Australia because of the free kick they give all these people.”

Aug 30 , 2019 / By :

Woolworths says it is normal practice to audit invoices amid claims it is billing suppliers for accounting mistakes more than five years old.

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Australia’s largest supermarket chain is accused of billing suppliers for the old mistakes and deducting money it claims it’s owed from their accounts without permission.

Suppliers are receiving bills, claiming they have charged the supermarket the wrong amount or supplied an incorrect quantity of a product, in a bid by Woolworths to recoup tens of millions of dollars from them by the month’s end, Fairfax Media reports.

“I have received an invoice for thousands of dollars dating back from 2010,” one unnamed supplier told The Age newspaper.

Woolworths says it is usual practice to audit its invoices, just like most companies, and it has done so for some time.

“Where we find an error, in our favour or the supplier’s favour, we take steps to recover or return the money owed,” a company spokesman said on Friday.

The revelations come after Coles was on Monday ordered to pay $11.25 million in fines and costs in a settlement with the competition watchdog over charges of unconscionable conduct in its treatment of grocery suppliers.

The Federal Court found the nation’s second largest supermarket chain deliberately and illegally misused its market power to squeeze small suppliers for money.

The court verdict was welcomed by the Australian Food and Grocery Council, which has also warned its members about Woolworths seeking to recoup money for “profit gaps”, although it is not facing any charges.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission says it has received complaints about supermarket supplier issues in relation to Woolworths.

“We have received complaints about supermarket supplier issues which we will consider,” ACCC chairman Rod Sims said in a statement on Friday.

Mr Sims said suppliers or others who want to provide information to the ACCC should contact the organisation and talk to the senior manager involved in supermarket supplier investigations.

Aug 30 , 2019 / By :

BMC Racing Team have vowed to do all they can to ensure Cadel Evans shines in his farewell WorldTour race at the Tour Down Under next month.

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They have named a strong line-up including experienced Swiss riders Michael Schar and Danilo Wyss, Australian star Rohan Dennis and newcomer Campbell Flakemore who is the world under 23 time trial champion.

Team director Fabio Baldato said they were determined to give their 2011 Tour de France champion Evans a fitting farewell before his home fans.

“The team will be working hard for Cadel to support him to do his best,” said Baldato.

“The course will be challenging but I think he can perform well just one more time.”

Former Swiss national road champion Schar will bring his Grand Tour experience to Adelaide, having competed at all three grand tours including helping Evans to his Tour de France triumph three years ago.

Wyss first rode in Adelaide in 2010 and since then has completed seven Grand Tours, including the Giro d’Italia for the last five years.

Dennis will take to the start line for the fourth time in his hometown Adelaide, having won both the King of the Mountain and Young Rider classifications in 2012.

“I am fortunate to be racing alongside Cadel, working for him and the team as well as learning from him how he handles the pressure both on and off the bike before he hangs up the bike from WorldTour racing,” said Dennis.

Every time I compete at this race, it is a special event for not just me but for all Australians. It is bigger and bigger every year.

“Being on Willunga Hill is as close as most Australians will ever get to experience what it is really like, the crowds, the atmosphere on a Tour de France mountain finish.”

Young Tasmanian talent Flakemore will make his WorldTour debut at the event.

“Cadel Evans is massive in Australia and to be a part of his team at his last WorldTour race is really exciting, I am just looking forward to being a part of the whole show,” said Campbell.

The BMC Racing Team: Cadel Evans (Aus), Michael Schar (Swi), Peter Stetina (USA), Danilo Wyss (Swi), Silvan Dillier (Swi), Campbell Flakemore (Aus) and Rohan Dennis (Aus).

The Tour Down Under will be staged in and around Adelaide From January 17-25.

Aug 30 , 2019 / By :

Carol Earl isn’t content with running her own personal training business and a busy home life with husband Wayne and their three kids.

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After 25 Thai Boxing bouts she’s serious about starting a professional career and has even got a former Australian champion in her corner. 

 “Everyone knows who I am now because of my veil and I guess being unique is good.”

“The skill of just one punch that Nader Hamden taught me did wonders and I’m looking forward to the gruelling training he’s going to put me through,” Ms Earle told SBS.

She was brought up in a Muslim household but it was once she met her husband Wayne that her faith in Islam deepened. 

Wayne converted to the religion and three children later he’s now helping his wife pursue her dreams in the sport he persuaded her to take up.

“She inspires a lot of women, not just Muslim women but women all over Australia so the inspiration she gives people is something to be proud of,” he said.

After so many fights wearing the Hijab, the head covering is like part of her own skin and she says the fact so few female fighters wear one has actually helped her career.

“Everyone knows who I am now because of my veil and I guess being unique is good.”

While women’s boxing is now an Olympic sport, some people still feel it’s not right for women to trade punches.  That’s what trainer Nader Hamden thought until he met Carol. 

“She puts in as much as any guy puts in. So if she’s willing to keep doing that I’ll train her,” the man who won 43 of his 54 professional fights told SBS.

Husband Wayne was also a Thai Boxer, and it was with his encouragement that Carol decided to take it up.

Their three children have seen many of her fights, but only after Ms Earl realised how excited,  proud and happy they were to see their mum in the ring doing what she loves.

And she’d encourage any women around the country to try putting on the boxing gloves.  

“If there’s anyone out there wanting to do it,  just go out and do it because it’s probably the best thing they’ll ever do.” 

Ms Earl is hoping to have her first professional boxing bout in March. 

“If there’s anyone out there wanting to do it,  just go out and do it because it’s probably the best thing they’ll ever do.”