Perth Stadium will not host Ashes Test in December

The state government has confirmed the new Perth Stadium will not host the third Test of The Ashes cricket series in December.
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Minister for sport and recreation Mick Murray told reporters outside parliament that there was “no chance of a Test” at the new stadium.

This means the Test will be played at the WACA, which hosted its first Ashes match in 1970, ending in a draw.

“The scheduled opening has always been the start of the 2018 AFL season and that is what we’re working towards,” Mr Murray said.

“Hosting the Ashes Test at the new stadium would have been a spectacle, but unfortunately it’s just not possible and the state government is now working to correct the problems we have inherited.

“Confirmation of the Ed Sheeran concert in March 2018, just ahead of the first AFL match is a fantastic outcome for Western Australians, and we will continue to investigate the possibility of earlier events.”

In December, WAtodayflagged the $1.4 billion stadium at Burswood – which is now 82 per cent complete – wouldn’t be opened in time for the Perth Ashes Test, after former sports minister Mia Davies said it simply wouldn’t be ready.

“Construction remains on track to allow the venue to open, as scheduled, in time for the start of the 2018 AFL season,” she said at the time.

“At the moment the December date for the 2017 Ashes Test is before the expected date the Stadium will be ready.

“If there is an opportunity to get an event such as the Ashes to open the stadium we would welcome it but not at the expense of design and construction quality or operational planning and efficiency.”

One of the reasons for the delay was the steel cable-stay bridge – which will give sport punters a seamless walk to the Perth Stadium from the city and the new Perth Stadium train station – falling behind schedule.

But a former spokesman for transport Minister Bill Marmion at the time denied the chances of hosting an Ashes Test were on shaky ground because of delays to the bridge and train station.

A spokesman for Cricket Australia said in December it had a strong “desire” to be the first sport to open the stadium.

Cricket Australia denied it had given the Barnett government a December “deadline” for when the stadium would be complete or the Ashes Test would be moved to the WACA.

“There’s no firm deadline in place, we are in constant dialogue about progress of the construction,” he said.

“Tickets to the series don’t go on sale until May next year.

“If we get to a situation where it won’t be completed in time we will host the series at the WACA.

“Our CEO is on record about our desire to be the first sport to host in the new stadium.”

???Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland said the new stadium’s unavailability means that some men’s and women’s Big Bash League games will also be played at the WACA for the upcoming season.

“Whilst Cricket Australia and the WACA understand there will be a level of disappointment with this news for fans, we know that a Perth Test match at the WACA Ground will still be an enormously anticipated event that will be played in front of capacity crowds,” Mr Sutherland said.

“Details regarding ticket sales timelines and pricing for the Perth fixtures will be announced in due course.

“Both Cricket Australia and the WACA remain hopeful that the One-Day International against England, scheduled for 28 January 2018, will be played at the new stadium. Cricket will continue to work with the WA government and stadium management to achieve this outcome.”

The announcement comes as rumours continue to swirl that musician Ed Sheeran could open Perth Stadium.

The British singer-songwriter announced the dates for his upcoming Australian tour – with the star pencilled in to perform at the yet to be completed venue in March.

The 60,000-seat stadium is scheduled to open in early 2018, and Sheeran’s tour – announced by Frontier Touring on Tuesday night – kicks off in Perth at the stadium on Saturday March 3.

Sheeran’s Perth show is the earliest confirmed event there, with the AFL season expected to start at the tail end of March, EPL side Chelsea expected in late July and rugby’s State of Origin clash confirmed for 2019.

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‘Like poking a giant stick in a beehive’: Why historic legislation is doomed

Right-to-life demonstrators block the doorway of the Preterm Clinic in Cooper Street, Surry Hills on 28 May 1985. SMH NEWS Picture by BRUCE MILLER Abortion clinic protest rally pre term east Sydney protesters 1980s hhollins family planning clinic centre medical anti abortion Photo: Bruce MillerPremier Gladys Berejiklian will allow Liberal members of the upper house a conscience vote on a historic bill to legalise abortion in NSW, but even those in favour of law reform are unlikely to support the controversial laws as drafted.
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The Greens bill to decriminalise abortion will bring about the first parliamentary debate on the issue in more than 100 years, since it was introduced as an offence under the NSW Crimes Act 1900.

It also provides for safe access zones to be enacted outside reproductive health clinics, to prevent women and staff being harassed by anti-abortion protesters.

Greens MP Mehreen Faruqi said the NSW Parliament had been ignoring the conversation on abortion for a century.

“It is a change that is not only due, but well overdue,” Dr Faruqi said.

The Liberal party room agreement to give members a free vote means MPs on both sides of the upper house will be unshackled by party policy, as Labor’s longstanding position is to allow a conscience vote.

But Liberal MPs who support the decriminalisation of abortion say they will not support it in its current form, which places no limit on the gestation at which an abortion could be performed and does not mandate for it to be performed by a clinician.

Liberal MP Catherine Cusack said the bill was constructed in a way that she could not support and let women down on the opportunity for law reform.

“Anyone can perform an abortion, you don’t have to be a qualified clinician and you can have an abortion right up to the birth – the day the baby is born in fact,” Ms Cusack said.

“I just think it’s extraordinary. I see it as an effort to test our female premier on women’s issues and not as a genuine effort for reform which is what women are entitled to expect.”

A spokesman for Ms Berejiklian said she supported conscience votes on issues such as abortion, as she had stated previously.

In January, Ms Berejiklian was forced to reassert her government’s position on abortion after the new minister for women Tanya Davies said she was “personally ??? pro-life”.

Ms Berejiklian stepped into state that “there’s obviously no change in policy on those issues”.

Labor health spokesman Walt Secord said he would vote for the bill because he supported a woman’s right to choose in principle, but did not support the way Dr Faruqi had conducted the matter.

Abortion was allowed under common law and no prosecutions had taken place in NSW, while Dr Faruqi’s legislation did not provide a legal framework for medically approved abortions to occur, Mr Secord said.

Overseas efforts to codify common law had allowed groups to attempt to wind back a woman’s choice.

“I liken Dr Faruqi actions to taking a giant stick and poking it into a beehive, shaking it like hell and then walking away,” Mr Secord said.

“She is willing to jeopardise the current situation for her own base political advantage.”

The approach adopted by the Greens in bringing about the bill recalled to another MP’s mind the voluntary euthanasia bill introduced by Greens MP Cate Faehrmann in 2013.

Her attempt to legalise the practice was out-voted 23-13 after she failed to gain consensus within the house on the nuts and bolts, despite general support for the intention of the bill.

“The same rules don’t apply when you’re working with a conscience vote,” the MP said.

“You need to win people one by one and there needs to be people who will step up, put some political capital into it, work together and sometimes make compromises.”

Dr Faruqi said she gave notice of the bill two years ago, introduced it last year under the Baird government, and had engaged with many MPs throughout the process.

“This is not my bill, or a Greens bill,” she said.

“This is a bill we have brought to this parliament on behalf of the women of NSW, on behalf of medical practitioners, lawyers, and most importantly the community that overwhelmingly supports the decriminalisation of abortion and enactment of safe access zones outside clinics.”

Labor MP Penny Sharpe, who has proposed a separate bill on instituting safety zones around abortion clinics, said she expected seven or eight members on her side of the upper house to vote for the Greens bill and she would be among them. Showdown

The Catholic Church and Christian Rights Lobby have been campaigning against the bill among congregations, focusing on the ability to terminate pregnancies up until nine months and the outlawing of prayer vigils outside clinics.

They are facing a showdown with 300 medical practitioners and 100 law and criminology academics who have written to the legislative council in support of the law reform.

Medical director of Marie Stopes Australia Dr Philip Goldstone said current legislation meant doctors were reticent to provide abortion.

Just 355 NSW doctors are accredited to prescribe a medical abortion in NSW, according to 2017 data from the sole pharmaceutical supplier of the medications in Australia, MS Health.

“Abortion is still a taboo subject in the medical community. As long as it remains a crime it’s certainly not encouraging GPs to offer abortion care,” said Dr Godlstone who supports the Greens bill.

He rejected the suggestion that decriminalising abortion was a semantic move, arguing its illegality was a significant barrier to women unable to pay out-of-pocket at a private clinic.

“The public health system will provide everything a woman needs should she choose to continue her pregnancy, but if she chooses not to she is left seeking help in the private system.

“Public hospitals have really abdicated responsibility,” he said.

More than 120 law academics at NSW universities have signed an open letter asking MPs to support the Bill.

“Abortion is a health and welfare matter, not a criminal issue. People who have an abortion, and their doctors, should not face the risk of criminal prosecution,” the letter read.

Ms Faruqi said the church campaign was derived from the playbook of far-right anti-abortion groups in the United States.

“The suggestion that women will carry their pregnancies to term and then terminate without strong medical reasons is deeply offensive and implies that women can’t be trusted to make decisions about their own bodies,” she said.

Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists president Steve Robson said he had never in 26 years encountered a woman seeking a late term abortion for non-medical reasons.

One circumstance in which a woman might terminate a child close to the due date is if one twin had a severe disease incompatible with life but terminating earlier would compromise the normal twin.

“It would be an impossible decision,” Dr Robson said.

“These decisions are so hard for women, they put so much pressure on families, it’s so awful for doctors and nurses caring for these patients.

“We don’t believe there’s any place at all for decisions about pregnancy between a woman and her doctor to be in the criminal code.”

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Parent fury over last-minute NAPLAN change

Students with disabilities were given hours to apply for laptop access during NAPLAN, after the Victorian curriculum authority reversed a decision to deny more than 100 students laptop access the night before the test.
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The Victorian Curriculum Assessment Authority (VCAA) decided on Monday to reverse their decision to reject 108 applications for ‘assistive technology’, including computers, laptops and ipads. Over 300 applications were initially approved.

Schools were contacted by phone or email the day before NAPLAN’s first test. Students with dyslexia, dysgraphia, cerebral palsy, autism spectrum disorder and motor issues were affected, said the authority.

“The VCAA has now approved all applications for assistive technology that meet the guidelines and all schools have been able to successfully provide the accommodations,” a spokesman said.

Children and Young People with Disability Australia’s executive officer, Stephanie Gotlib, said the case was “hauntingly familiar”, after the authority made a last-minute decision on her own child’s access to adjustments for their VCE exams last year.

She said it was great that more students with disabilities were given access to the laptop, but “why do they find out so late?”

“It’s totally unacceptable that we can have an education department that talks about wanting to support inclusive education and promote access and equality for students with a disability, yet this achieves the opposite. This just causes anxiety.”

Parent Heidi Gregory, found out at 5pm on Monday about the VCAA’s decision. NAPLAN started on Tuesday.

She hurriedly contacted her daughter’s principal at Yarra Primary School, who secured laptop access for 10-year-old Phoebe, who has dyslexia.

Ms Gregory said the incident was shambolic and many students who were entitled to the technology have missed out.

“I am surprised that this has happened in the very last minute; lots of schools will be ill-prepared to provide support for children ??? it’s extremely unfair,” she said.

“The mental health of some of these kids will be affected, especially those who are doing NAPLAN for the first time. My daughter for example has developed some anxiety related to this.”

Ms Gregory said Phoebe was allowed to sit the test in a quiet room and was given extra time, but she did not originally apply for a laptop thinking it was not available to students with dyslexia.

She said many other families were in the same boat.

“We are getting calls from parents who say they are not able to use a laptop and didn’t even know one was available, and are feeling very upset and anxious their children may have been provided with ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) support and are not.

“The only way a parent can find out what accommodations students can get is if they go to the VCAA website, and unless someone sits down and explains it to you, I don’t think parents know what they can get for their child with a disability.”

Charli Mihalek, a 13-year-old student with dyslexia at Beaconhills College will miss out on a laptop this year.

Her mother, Gil, said parents and schools were simply not being informed about the disability support that is available to them.

“It would have been nice to be given the option,” she said.

“There is a lack of information to the schools and the parents about what we can apply for and even how to apply, I have no idea who I would even go to to apply for accommodations other than the co-ordinators at school.”

The adjustments for NAPLAN are permitted in line with the Disability Discrimination Act 1992, which state that reasonable adaptations must be made to help ensure students with disability are not disadvantaged.

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Weekend Planner: May 13-14, 2017

SATURDAY Handmade in the Hunter Markets
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St John NSW Volunteer Recruitment Drive and Open Day9am to4pm, Warners Bay foreshore. First Aid and CPR demonstrations; vehicle and communications equipment displays; sausage sizzle. You will also be able to learn more about the various First Aid Courses provided by St John NSW, and buy a First Aid kit.

Family Fun Day10am to 3pm, at Estia Health, 42 Spinifex Avenue, Tea Gardens. Market stalls, food vendors and family-friendly entertainment. A fund-raiser for Tea Gardens Lions Club.

Riverlights Lantern Workshop10.30am to 1.30pm, Maitland Regional Art Gallery, 230 High Street, Maitland.

World Fair Trade Day 2017 10am to 4pm, Warners Bay Baptist Church.Fair Traders fromacross NSW will be joining forces to advocate, celebrate, display and discuss Fair Trade. There will be a market and a panel discussing this year’s Fair Trade Day theme, which is#agentforchange.

Weaving Workshop 10.30am to 1.30pm, Hunter Wetlands Centre. Hosted by Wildcraft Australia, learn a traditional Arnhemland weaving method using local materials. Cost$70 plus $5 entry to the Wetlands Centre. Book online at wildcraftaustralia南京夜网.

Old4New Lifejacket UpgradeExchange at a discounted price your old lifejacket for a modern style jacket and receive advice from NSW Maritime on lifejacket care and service from experts on site.Saturday: 10am to3pm,Rathmines boat ramp;Sunday:7am to 11am, Eleebana boat ramp.

Frocks at the TrotsNewcastle Harness Racing. A fund-raising event supporting Mater Cancer Services.

Singleton Festival Saturday and Sunday. Go online towearesingletonfestival南京夜网 for program of events.

Hunter Valley Wine & Food Festival Go online towinecountry南京夜网419论坛 to see what’s on.

SUNDAYNRL Newcastle Knights vs Canberra Raiders, 2pm kick-off, McDonald Jones Stadium, Broadmeadow.

Free Artist Talk Noon to 1pm, Gallery 139. Helene Leane talks about her exhibition Red Gold: The Cedar Story.

Janes Walk: Inner City Parks and Heritage Ramble 1.30pm to 3pm, meet atPacific Park shelter.A circular walk exploring a section of Hunter Street east, the Hill and a number of Newcastle’s parks.Walk leader is Bob Clifton of the Newcastle Ramblers Bushwalking Club.

Miss Porters House Open Day 1pm to 4pm,434 King Street, Newcastle West. Acentury’s worth of memorabilia including a specialexhibition of tea sets.Cost $8 adults; $6 pensioners and children five years and over; National Trust Members and children under five admitted free.

Mother’s Day Don’t forget!

SAVE THE DATEPCYC dinner with dancing and aerial acts beneath the “big top”. Underground Epicureans will bring the fun of the circus to the annual PCYC fund-raising dinner. Enjoy a four-course meal by Sprout, music by the amazing Hot Potato Band and an aerial show by Circus Avalon. Friday and Saturday, May 26 and 27. $150 per person. Tickets now on sale through Eventbrite.

Also,Planning Your Dream Kitchen. A free seminarfor anyone who would like to avoid the pitfalls and get the best bang for their buck in renovating their old kitchen or building a new one.Saturday, May 20,10am to 11.30am at HIA Home Inspirations Centre,17 Murray Dwyer Circuit, Mayfield West.

MARKETSWarners Bay Markets Saturday, 8am to 2pm, Warner park, corner The Esplanade and Lake Street, Warners Bay.

Healing Haven Markets Saturday, 9am to 2pm, Dudley Public School, 124 Ocean Street, Dudley.

Carrington Village Markets Saturday,9am to 2pm, Carrington Public School, Young Street, Carrington. Family-friendly, community event with market and food stalls, live entertainment, children’s activities and more.

Handmade in the Hunter Markets Saturday, 9am to 3pm, Kevin Sobels Wines, Pokolbin.

Kurri Kurri Community Markets Saturday, 8am to 1pm, Rotary Park, Lang Street, Kurri Kurri.

Hamilton Clocktower Markets Saturday, 8am to 2pm, James Street Plaza, Hamilton.

Lake Macquarie City Farmers Market Saturday, 8am to 1pm, Tighes Hill TAFE.

Hunter Street Organic Food MarketSaturday, 9am to 3pm, Hunter Street Mall, Newcastle.

Hunter Wine Country MarketsSaturday, 9am to 3pm, De Bortoli Wines, 532 Wine Country Drive, Pokolbin.

Mothers Day Markets Sunday, 9am to 2pm, John Street, Singleton.

Newcastle City Farmers Market Sunday, 7am to 2pm, Newcastle Showground, Broadmeadow.

Adamstown Lions MarketSunday,8am to noon,corner Glebe and Brunker roads, Adamstown.

Wollombi Vilage Market Sunday, 9am to 2pm, corner Great North and Wollombi roads, Wollombi.

ARTS & CULTUREEchology Presents: The Colours of French Choral Music Saturday, 7.30pm, Newcastle Conservatorium of Music. Conducted by Dr Philip Matthias and accompanied by organist Peter Guy, this concert will transport you to The Abbey of Saint-Étienne using digital cathedral organ samples alongside the stunning choral voices of Echology and Christ Church Cathedral Choir.

Maitland Regional Art GalleryMaitland Embroiderers Group Inc: From the Fine to the Fabulous. Ends Sunday.David Capra: Teena’s Bathtime; Vanessa Turton:Welcome to WOOF WOOF.Until May 28.Lionel’s Place: Lionel Lindsay from the MRAG Collection. Until April 8, 2018.Jim Anderson: Lampoon, An Historical Art Trajectory 1970-2017; Locust Jones: Back to the Dark Ages.Until June 18.Frank Murri: The Prime Ingredient in a Big Piece of Pi; Colonial Afterlives: A Salamanca Arts Centre Exhibition.Until July 23.

The Bank Glass GalleryBush to Beach Art Exhibition. Ends Saturday.

Old Fire Shed GalleryIt’s New Art 2017. Until December 18.

Newcastle Art Gallery Magic Mike. Until May 28.

Newcastle Museum A Ticket To Paradise?; Shadows of Sacrifice; Remembering The Pasha Storm.

Wallsend District LibraryNikon-Walkley Press Photography Exhibition. Until May 28.

Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery Soul Food, 10.30am to noon, Sunday.

Muswellbrook Regional Arts CentreEbb & Flow: Untethered Fibre Artists;The Lady & the Unicorn: Arthur Boyd & Peter Porter;Creature: Max Watters Collection.Until July 2.

Timeless TextilesThe Breath of Felt; Lumpy. Until June 4.

The Lock-UpJamie North: Slidings; Sally Bourke: Brutal. Until June 11.

CStudios Art GalleryDouble Vision –Land and Sea. Paintings by Peter Erson Smith and Kay McFarlane Smith. Until May 27.

Art Systems WickhamWet, by Shelagh Lummis. Ends Sunday.

Lake Macquarie City Art GalleryScanlines. Until June 25. Water: This Precious Liquid. Until July 2.CLICK: Schools in Focus. Until June 25.

Gallery 139Red Gold: The CedarStory by Helene Leane. Ends Sunday.

Curve Gallery & StudiosSEA: Jane Lander. Ends Saturday.

THEATREAnyone for Breakfast?Derek Benfield comedy. Club 71, at St Peter’s Hall, Hamilton. Friday and Saturday; dinner and show from 7pm.

DisappointmentsJudith Lucy and Denise Scott show people how to ignore social media and embrace mediocrity. Civic Theatre, Newcastle. Saturday at 5pm and 7.30pm. 4929 1977.

Denise Scott and Judith Lucy.

Don’t Dress for DinnerBrisk comedy by Marc Camoletti. Maitland Repertory Theatre, at its theatre. Friday and Saturday at 8pm.

Laugh Out Loud FestivalComedy sketches andmusical routines developed by Hunter Drama’s young students, aged five to 18. Civic Playhouse, Newcastle. Two shows, one on Monday and Wednesday, May 15 and 17, at 6.30pm; the other on Tuesday and Thursday, May 16 and 18, at 6.30pm.

Two to TangoBright double bill: Last Tango in Little Grimley, in which a small town theatre faced with closure decides to stage a sex comedy; and Haiku, moving play about a mother and her autistic daughter. DAPA, at DAPA Theatre, Hamilton. Opens Saturday at 2pm and 7.30pm, then plays Friday and Saturday at 7.30pm, until May 27, plus 2pm matinees on May 21and May 27.

Snugglepot and CuddlepieYoung People’s Theatre, at its Hamilton theatre. Saturdays at 2pm, until May 20, plus 7pm Saturday show on May 20, and 2pm Sunday, May 14.

The Golden AntelopeAcomic send-up of Agatha Christie mysteries by Newcastle’s Chris Fletcher and Brian Birkefeld. Footlice Theatre Company, at the Unorthodox Church of Groove, Newcastle West. Saturday at 8pm.

The MiserMoliere’s classic comedy about an old man who makes those around him miserable. St Francis Xavier College, at the Civic Playhouse, Newcastle. Saturday at 7.30pm.

MUSIC5 Sawyers Saturday, DJ Timmy Coffey. Sunday, Adrianna Mac Duo.

Albion Hotel SingletonSaturday, You’re The Star Karaoke.

Argyle HouseSaturday, Hotel Motel.

Bar Petite Saturday, HP Duo.

Battlesticks Bar Saturday, Zac and Ben Duo. Sunday, AQWA.

Beach HotelSunday, Prestige Inc.

Belmont 16s Saturday, Anthology, Daniel Arvidson. Sunday, Phillip Crawshaw.

Belmore HotelSaturday, Dun Robin EP Launch.

Beresfield Bowling Club Saturday, Rubber Bullet.

The BradfordSaturday, The Remedy.

Burwood Inn Saturday, Ngariki.

Cambridge Hotel Sunday, Peking Duck, Kwame.

Catho PubSaturday, Darren Rolling Keys. Sunday, Loose Bazooka.

Central Charlestown Leagues ClubSaturday, Pete Hibbert.

Cessnock Leagues ClubSaturday, 2GoodReasons.

Charlestown Bowling Club Saturday, Pistol Pete. Sunday, Mick Jones.

Civic TheatreSaturday, Judith Lucy and Denise Scott – Disappointments Tour.

Clarendon Hotel Saturday, Kaylah Anne.

Club KotaraSaturday, Bobby C.

Club Lemon TreeSaturday, Boney Rivers. Sunday, Steve Boyd.

Club Maitland City Sunday, Pistol Pete.

Colliery InnSaturday, Mardmax.

Commercial Hotel MorpethSaturday, Karaoke Klubhouse.

Criterion Hotel CarringtonSaturday, Roxy’s Piano Bar. Sunday, Brien McVernon.

Criterion Hotel WestonSaturday, Revampt.

Crown & Anchor HotelSaturday, Matt McLaren. Sunday, Jason Bone.

Customs House Saturday, Dean Kyrwood. Sunday, Matt McLaren.

Cypress LakesSaturday, Tim Harding.

D’Albora MarinaSunday, Jordan Fleming.

Duke Of Wellington Saturday, Jungle Kings Duo.

East Cessnock Bowling ClubSaturday, Rob Wilson. Sunday, Roadhouse Country Band.

East Maitland Bowling ClubSaturday, The Lamplighters. Sunday, Roxy.

Exchange HotelSaturday, Evergreen, Party DJs.

Family Hotel Maitland Saturday, Sarah’s Karaoke.

FinnegansSaturday, Holly J, Lionette, Kidd Kaos.

FogHorn Brewhouse Saturday, Paparazzi.

Gallipoli Legion Club Saturday, Witchery.

George Tavern Saturday, Big Night Out. Sunday, Jerome.

Great Northern HotelTeralba Saturday, Kim.

Greenroof HotelSaturday, Jake Davey. Sunday, Jason Bone.

Gunyah HotelSaturday, Gen-X. Sunday, Rubber Bullet.

​Hamilton Station Hotel Saturday,Apollo Hooks, Lazarus Mode, Midnight Movers.

Harrigan’s Pokolbin Saturday, Kristy J, Crawfish Stew. Sunday, Kempy.

Horizons Golf Resort Salamander BaySunday, Cathy Gannon.

Honeysuckle Hotel Saturday, Crocq Duo. Sunday, Mike Vee, Phonic Duo.

Hotel DelanySaturday, Alias.

Jewells TavernSaturday, Mark Wells Duo. Sunday, Tim Harding.

The Junction HotelSaturday, Max Jackson.

Kent HotelSaturday, DJ, Project X. Sunday, Greg Bryce Band.

King Street HotelSaturday, Stafford Brothers.

Lakeside Village TavernSaturday, Misbehave.

The LandingSaturday, Jessica Cain.

Lass O’Gowrie Saturday,Unfit For Human Consumption, Barfunkle, Grand Master Monk (solo).

Lizotte’s Saturday, Slim Jim Phantom Trio.

Lochinvar HotelSunday, Russell Snape.

Maitland City Bowling Club Sunday, Pistol Pete.

Mark HotelSaturday, Dr Zoom Duo. Sunday, Steve Edmonds Band.

Mary Ellen Saturday, Redline. Sunday, Mark Wells.

Maryland Tavern Saturday, Jade & Willow.

Mattara HotelSunday, Beth Gleeson.

Mavericks On The Bay Saturday, Robbie T. Sunday, Todd Schmoo.

Mavericks On DarbySaturday, Phonic Duo.

Mezz Bar at Wallsend Diggers Saturday, Loko. Sunday, Yianni, Boney Rivers.

Murray’s BrewerySunday, Daniel Arvidson.

Nag’s Head HotelSaturday, Blues Bombers.

Neath HotelSaturday, Mike Vee.

Nelson Bay Diggers Saturday, Marissa+1. Sunday, Bobby C.

Newcastle Cruising Yacht ClubSunday, The Years.

Northern Star HotelSaturday, Nano.

Paxton Bowling ClubSaturday, Emily Smith.

Pedens Cessnock Saturday, Rock Factor.

Pippis At The Point Saturday, Dos Eager. Sunday, Ben Travis.

Premier HotelSaturday, Tom Buckley. Sunday, Hornet.

Prince of Wales Hotel Saturday, Tyade.

Queens Wharf Hotel Saturday, Jake Davey, Deuce. Sunday, Fishfry.

Railway Hotel CessnockSaturday, Todd Schmoo.

Raymond Terrace Bowling ClubSunday, Big Pete.

Rockpools Cafe and BarSunday, Bonny Rai.

Royal Federal Hotel Branxton Saturday, Guerilla Radio.

Royal Motor Yacht Club TorontoSunday, Arna Georgia.

Rutherford HotelSaturday, Jackson Halliday.

Salamander ShoresSunday, Max Jackson.

Seabreeze Hotel Sunday, David McCreedie, Dos Eager.

Seven Seas HotelSaturday, Tom Christie.

Shenanigans at the Imperial Saturday, Sarah Christine. Sunday, Alex Lewinski.

Shortland Hotel Saturday, Brien McVernon.

Soldiers Point Bowling ClubSaturday, Purple Hearts.

South Newcastle Leagues ClubSaturday, Chad Shuttleworth.

Spinning Wheel Hotel Sunday, Jesse Fildes.

Stag and Hunter Hotel Saturday, Joe Terror.

Star Hotel Saturday, Adrianna Mac Duo. Sunday, Bruce Mathiske’s Guitar Lounge.

Station Hotel Kurri Kurri Saturday, Extreme Mobile Entertainment.

Stockton Bowling ClubSaturday, The Harbour Masters.

Sunnyside Tavern Saturday, Ryan Daley.

Swansea RSL ClubSaturday, Brent Murphy Duo.

Tilligerry RSL Saturday, Tim Usher.

Toronto WorkersSaturday, KR Duo. Sunday, Roxy.

Victoria Hotel Hinton Saturday, Hayden Johns. Sunday, Beau Hatch.

Warners At The Bay Saturday, Greg Bryce Duo.

Westfield KotaraSaturday, Melanie Feder. Sunday, Marissa.

Wests CardiffSaturday, Jake Rattle and Roll.

Wests New Lambton Saturday, The Big Bang, Ross Wilson & The Peaceniks.

Wickham Park HotelSunday, Catfish Soup.

Windsor Castle HotelSaturday, Michael Muchow.

MOVIESA Dog’s Purpose(PG) A dog looks to discover his purpose in life over the course of several lifetimes and owners.

Alien: Covenant(MA 15+) The crew of a colony ship, bound for a remote planet, discover an uncharted paradise with a threat beyond their imagination.

Alone in Berlin(M) Two working class Germansbegin writing postcards as a form of resistance. (Lake)

A Street Cat Named Bob(PG)James Bowen, a busker and recovering drug addict, has his life transformed when he meets a stray ginger cat. (Regal)

Disney Jr at the Movies: Mickey and the Roadster Racers(G) Mickey Mouse and his pals racearound the globe. (Event)

Emo: The Musical(M) Ethan embarks on a new journey as he tries to fit in at his new school. (Event)

Get Out(MA) A young African-American man visits his Caucasian girlfriend’s mysterious family estate.

Going In Style(M)Three senior citizens in their 70s decide to rob a bank.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2(M)The Guardians must fight to keep their newfound family together.

Handsome Devil(M) The loner and the star athlete at a rugby-mad school form an unlikely friendship. (Event)

High Society(G) 1956 musical starring Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly and Frank Sinatra. (Regal)

Jasper Jones(M)On the night that Jasper Jones shows him the dead body of young Laura Wishart, Charlie’s life is changed forever. (Regal)

Lion(PG) Afive-year-old Indian boy gets lost on the streets of Calcutta, thousands of kilometres from home. (Regal)

Loving(PG)The story of Richard and Mildred Loving, a couple arrestedfor interracial marriage in 1960s Virginia. (Regal)

Manchester By The Sea(M)A depressed uncle is asked to take care of his teenage nephew after the boy’s father dies. (Regal)

Proximity(CTC) The film follows eight of the world’s best surfersas they search for new waves and deeper understanding in exotic destinations. (Event)

Raw(R)When a young vegetarian undergoes a carnivorous hazing ritual at vet school, an unbidden taste for meat begins to grow in her.

Rosalie Blum(M) French comedy about a hairdresserwho meets a mysterious and lonely woman. In French with subtitles. (Regal)

Rules Don’t Apply(M)An unconventional love story. (Lake)

Snatched(MA 15+)A young woman persuades her ultra-cautious mother to travel with her to paradise.

Table 19(M)Ex-maid of honour Eloisedecides to attend a weddingonly to find herself seated with five randomguests.

The Beatles: Eight Days A Week(M) The rise of the Fab Four. (Regal)

The Case For Christ(PG) Ajournalist struggles with his wife’s newfound faith in Christ.

The Fate Of The Furious(M)A mysterious woman seduces Dom back into a world of crime that he can’t seem to escape.

Their Finest(M)A British film crew attempts to boost morale during World War II by making a propaganda film after the Blitzkrieg.

The Zookeeper’s Wife(M)Zookeepers Antonina and Jan Zabinski helped save hundreds of people and animals during the Nazi invasion.

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Government tells Lake Macquarie Council to remove sex offenders photos

Convicted: Milton Orkopoulos entering Newcastle Court in 2008. Picture: Jonathan CarrollUPDATENSW Local Government Minister Gabrielle Upton has demanded Lake Macquarie Council remove the portraits of convicted sex offenders from its chambers, urging the council to “just get on with it”.
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Ms Upton called on Thursday for the council to remove the images ofMilton Orkopoulos and Douglas Carley.

“They just need to get on to the job of taking those portraits down,” Ms Upton said in a statement to the Herald.

“No one stands in the way, I don’t stand in the way.

“They’re just completely out of touch.

“It doesn’t make any sense and it’s entirely in the council’s hands to do the right thing.

“Those portraits should be removed today.

“They should just get on with it and that is my request to them.”

EARLIERPORTRAITS of two seniorpublic officials who areconvictedsex offenders remainhanging in theLake Macquarie City Council chambers, to the outrage ofadvocates for survivors of abuse.

The photographs of disgraced mayor DouglasCarley and councillor-turned-state Labor minister Milton Orkopoulosare displayed prominently in a room used for committee meetings –often attended bymembers of the public –and at the chambers’ main entrance.

The Newcastle Heraldunderstandsa majority of councillors voted downa motion to remove allphotographs and plaques on council assets of former council representatives “convicted of a serious or strictly indictable offence”, ina confidential sessionlast November.

BothCarleyand Orkopouloswere jailed for a range of sexual offences involving young boys.

Asked why the images of the convicted sex offendershadn’tbeen removed from the chambers, a council spokeswoman said“the confidential notice of motion was lost and the matter remains confidential”.

The council wouldn’t comment further.

Lake Macquarie mayor Kay Fraser said discussion of the matter “should be done with proper considerationof the legal and social implications, and in a manner that is sensitive to victims of crime”.

Disgusted: Michelle Shetab said she “just wanted the pictures gone” of Douglas Carley and Milton Orkopoulos. “This is a wall of shame, not a wall of honour.” She will table her petition at a council meeting. Picture: Marina Neil

Tony Phiskie, a social worker from the Survivors & Mates Support Network, said the presence of the portraits was a “slap in the face” for all victims of abuse.

“It’s disrespectful and almost as if what happened to them has not been heard,” Mr Phiskiesaid.

“It certainly undermines their belief that the larger community is taking on board what they’re saying.”

Outraged Eleebana resident Michelle Shetab hascirculateda petition demanding the councilremove the photos and has collected about 1000 signatures.

Ms Shetab wears her cause –justice for victims of sexual abuse –in the rearwindow of her car.

The poster she displays demands the removal of photos of criminalformer officialsfromthecouncil chambers.

“We can’t turn a blind eye to abusers,” Ms Shetab said.

“If the Queen can strip Rolf Harris of his knighthood then surely the council can take these pictures down.”

Liberal councillor Kevin Baker agreed.

“I think it’s abhorrent that these photos remain in positions of honour,” Cr Baker said.

“It sends an extremely bad message to victims of abuse that we would continue to display images of people who’ve committed these crimes.”

The closedvote onthe controversial photos means it is unclear which councillors supported keeping them.

Ms Shetab wrote to all councillorslast year and only received a full response from Cr Christine Buckley.

In an email seen by theHerald,Cr Buckleysaid sheshared “revulsion of the behaviours involved, but they have nothing to do with the fact that these people were elected by, and served the interests of” the Lake Macquarie community.

“I believe the decision to hang portraits was an appropriate decision made by a previous council and it remains appropriate today,” Cr Buckley wrote.

“In my view council is simply providing a visual historical record of those who have been elected to represent their community.”

But Ms Shetab refusedto accept this.

“If it’s up there for historic reasons let’s put their whole history up there,” she said. “This [removal] is going to happen whether they like it or not,” she said.

“Even if it means I remove them and get arrested in the process. We cannot have paedophiles on our wall.”

President ofsurvivors’groupBlue Knot Foundation, Dr Cathy Kezelman, said victims could be “retraumatised” bythe photos.

“It can trigger reactions of distress, anger and creates situations where people need support,” she said.

“It is contingent on [the community]to ensure we’re not adding to people’s trauma and retraumatising them.”

She saidthe photos were “inappropriate and unnecessary”.

“These crimes negate the right thatsomeone has to hold a position that normally is one of respect and adulation.”

Douglas Carley was a councillor for 10 years and mayor from 1991 to 1993.

He waschargedwith the aggravated indecent assault of a 12 year-old-boy, andjailed for three years.

He was convicted in 1995 ofindecently assaulting a 15-year-old boy.

Milton Orkopoulos was a councillor from 1995 until1999, thenSwansea MP.

He was convicted of 30 child sex and drug offences, andsentencedto13 yearsin jail.

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