News from the front

This article is published by Rosie Williams under the CC by 4.0 licence.


SAS Trooper and whistleblower, Evan Donaldson just turned down a million dollar settlement- find out why.

In the continuing saga of Australia’s live export industry, Veterinarian Lynn Simpson is taking on the Commonwealth over being ousted from the Department of Agriculture for telling the truth about animal welfare in a report intended for a committee reviewing live export standards.


The Walkleys Foundation is running an event tomorrow in Redfern to cover the basics of what journalists need to know about dealing securely with their sources. Presenter is Gabor Szathmari who also runs Sydney Crypto Parties.
“Sources are at the heart of journalism. But protecting them has become increasingly complex and technical — and can be daunting. We aim to make it easier”

UNSW is running a hackathon in July titled HackJustice aimed at providing assistance to refugees.

“The legal industry is changing. Increasing demand and limited resources have created bigger barriers to justice than ever before. For our community legal centres, this translates to longer hours, less funding and an ever increasing list of clients.”


Transparency Australia has released their June newsletter TIA Australia News covering the election campaign and introducing Whistling While You Work, research funded by the Australian Research Council.

“Prior to election day, we need a clear and positive statement from all parties as to where they stand on major anti -corruption measures. ”

Whistleblowers Australia’s quarterly newsletter The Whistle is available. Former FOI officer turned whistleblower Stacey Higgins has some very useful tips on what to do and what not to do when making FOI requests.


The Greens, Labor & Pirate Parties have provided answers to the questions posed in my Open Government Policy Explorer. The Liberals did not reply to any of my approaches.

Did you know that political parties are specifically excluded from the Privacy Act? Most Australians, (until quite recently myself included) have no idea. In fact the concept is so absurd that some of us have to check this is actually the case.

Having had recent correspondence with several politicians including receiving a very concerning response from a party volunteer to a private and sensitive email I sent to a local candidate, and with privacy and political parties in the spotlight thanks to Parakeelia, I decided the time for a petition was ripe. Having received 60 signatures in its first day (apparently in the top 15%) of online petitions and having educated a barrage of people on this absurd exclusion to the Privacy Act, it seems a worthwhile effort.

Please sign the petition and share your reasons for doing so as this helps educate others:

“I’m signing because privacy is a basic right that should be respected by all legal entities: people, corporations, governments. No exclusions No excuses” Paul Davis

“Political parties should treat citizens with at least as much respect as other organisations – and probably with more!” Craig Thomler

‘Citizens not Suspects’ is a petition to:

  • ensure the list of agencies with warrantless access to telecommunications data (metadata) is not expanded significantly
  • to extend the warrant requirement for access to telecommunications data (metadata) from journalists to all Australians
  • to reduce the unjustified two year retention period for internet data

If you want to protect your internet browsing from prying eyes, check out the PowerPoint ‘Safe Browsing in 2016‘ available at the CryptoParty site or hit up author Gabor for more information.

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