Demand at food banks surged 47% during Covid-19 – mostly driven by casual workers and international students.
The statistics are from a new report released today tracking the months between April and September. This was despite the doubling of the jobseeker payment and the introduction of the jobkeeper subsidy, with international students ineligible for both.
Luke Henriques-Gomes has the story:
Barnaby Joyce has blasted his own Coalition government for what he calls a “deal” with Pauline Hanson after the One Nation leader was allowed to announce a $23m grant for a stadium in Rockhampton – complete with a cheque emblazoned with her face.
Joyce told Guardian Australia: “I suspect it was a deal – obviously it must be for a form of support for another issue … and this is a payment for it.”
“It was a program that was brought about by the Nationals, not One Nation,” Joyce said.
My colleague Paul Karp has the full story:
Virus can last 28 days on phones and banknotes
Australian scientists have discovered that the virus that causes Covid-19 can survive for up to 28 days on surfaces such as the glass on mobile phones, stainless steel, vinyl and paper banknotes.
The virus survived longer on paper banknotes than on plastic banknotes and lasted longer on smooth surfaces rather than porous surfaces such as cotton.
Read the full story here:
Victorian restaurateur launches high court challenge to lockdown
A Victorian restaurateur is launching a high court challenge against the Victorian government’s lockdown, arguing that it is unconstitutional.
Julian Gerner, who owns a restaurant and bar in Sorrento, is being represented by Brett Walker SC and Michael Wyles QC, and will argue that the lockdown was disproportionate and breached an implied right in the constitution of freedom of movement within states, according to the Age.
There is an express right in the constitution of freedom of trade and commerce between states, but any right to that freedom within a state would have to be successfully argued as “implied” by Gerner’s legal team.
In a statement, Gerner said that restrictions such as the 5km radius were “not what we signed up for and is inconsistent with a free society, representative democratic government and civilised living.
“Aggressive and heavy-handed enforcement of these restrictions has also alarmed most fair-minded people.”
Kevin Rudd: ‘It’s time we stood up against the bullies and Murdoch’
The former prime minister Kevin Rudd is on the ABC right now, speaking about his petition calling for a royal commission into Rupert Murdoch’s Australian media empire.
He says people all over Australia are “scratching their heads” because Murdoch-owned media “no longer provide anything approaching balance to news reporting”:
There’s just one side of the story being told. Murdoch controls 70% of the print media and here in Queensland owns virtually every single newspaper. The whole Queensland coast is Murdoch-owned.
When you have got James Murdoch today who has gone on the record in the New York Times saying his reason for leaving News Corporation and the board was because News Corporation was legitimising disinformation. His words, not mine.
Why isn’t that coverage in today’s Murdoch media? Why are we running away from that as a central news story? It’s mind-blowing.
Rudd says people in politics and journalism are “scared” of the Murdoch empire, and of being blacklisted by it.
“That is why we need the dispassionate analysis of a royal commission about what is going wrong with the concentration of media power in Australia,” he says.
“It’s time we stood up against the bullies and Murdoch and Michael Miller, Ben English, the editor of the Daily Telegraph, Chris Dore, the editor of the Australian, and all the other assistant Voldemorts who run the operation; instead people are frightened and part of the petition is to cause people not to be frightened of them.”
Victoria reports 15 new Covid cases
Victoria has recorded 15 new cases of Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, with thankfully no new deaths.
But those new cases are still in the double digits, and it means the 14-day rolling average has now increased in metro Melbourne.
NSW issues alerts for venues in western Sydney
NSW Health has issued alerts for five new venues in western and south western Sydney.
- Big W, Carnes Hill – 4 October, 3pm-4.30pm
- Aldi, Edmondson Park – 4 October, 6.30pm-7pm
- Chemist Warehouse, Casula – 6 October, 12.30pm-1pm
- Bunnings, Crossroads – 7 October, 2pm-3pm
- Costco, Casula – 9 October, 3pm-3.30pm
Anyone who attended is considered a casual contact and must monitor for symptoms and get tested immediately if they develop. After testing, they must remain in isolation until a negative test result is received.
Yesterday the state recorded three new cases of local transmission, with today’s numbers due at 11am.
NSW Health also said: “Testing numbers have dropped recently, which is a concern.”
“We are appealing to the community to come forward for testing right away if you have even the mildest of symptoms like a runny nose or scratchy throat, cough, fever or other symptoms that could be Covid-19.”
Hello everyone, and welcome back to the blog. It’s Monday and it’s Naaman Zhou here.
The blog captain extraordinaire Amy Remeikis is taking a few days off the blog this week – returning to the only slightly less stressful job of political reporting in Canberra. She’ll be back on the blog next week.
Today primary and VCE students in Melbourne will return to school in person for the first time in 10 weeks. At the weekend the Victorian premier, Daniel Andrews, delivered his 100th consecutive daily press conference, the state recorded 12 new cases on Sunday, and all eyes on will be on today’s numbers to see if they can crack into single digits.
Meanwhile, a legal challenge to the state’s lockdown is due to be filed with the high court this morning. The restaurateur Julian Gerner is arguing that the lockdown was unconstitutional as it was “heavy-handed” and infringed on a right to “freedom of movement” and commerce between states.
In NSW, the premier, Gladys Berejiklian, will appear as a witness at the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption today as she testifies about her former colleague Daryl Maguire.
NSW Health have also released more locations of potential Covid exposure in western and south-western Sydney.
Scott Morrison will be in Queensland today as he helps the Liberal National party campaign before the Queensland state election on 31 October.
We’ll be bringing you all news as it happens. Stick with us.