The PRWIRE Press Releases https:// 2021-04-13T03:43:48Z MOB BOSS MICHAEL FRANZESE MAKES YOU AN OFFER YOU SHOULDN'T REFUSE 2021-04-13T03:43:48Z mob-boss-michael-franzese-makes-you-an-offer-you-shouldn-t-refuse MOB BOSS MAKES YOU AN OFFER YOU SHOULDNT REFUSE HOW MOB BOSS MADE MILLIONS   # MICHAEL FRANZESE’s OFFER YOU SHOULDN’T REFUSE# LEARN HOW TO NEGOTIATE IN BUSINESS LIKE THE MAFIA# HOW TO DO BUSINESS LIKE A BOSS# MADE MAN TEACHES YOU HOW TO BECOME A “wise guy”# EXCLUSIVE “sit down” LIVESTREAM Former Captain of New York’s Colombo organised crime family, Michael Franzese will speak at an Australian exclusive live “Sit Down”  HOW TO DO BUSINESS LIKE A BOSS to tell all about how he spent his time making millions as a Mob Boss on Thursday April 22nd at 11am. Free registration at Once described by a Vanity Fair journalist, as “making the most money since Al Capone”, Franzese will share the tricks of the trade and all the negotiating business techniques he used to help him become the youngest person listed on Fortune Magazine’s 50 most wealthy and powerful MOB bosses. Michael, who was at one stage making $8 million dollars a week, will share his proven street-smart strategies that livestream attendees can take away and implement in business straight away! Michael Franzese says, “You’re really going to benefit from this live stream! I encourage everybody to sign up as soon as they can, with limited spaces it’s going to go quick and this really is an offer you shouldn’t refuse!”. About Michael Franzese Michael Franzese grew up as the son of the notorious Underboss of New York’s violent and feared Colombo crime family. At his most affluent, Michael was generating an estimated $5 to $8 million per week from legal and illegal businesses and in 1986, was named one of the biggest money earners the mob had seen since Al Capone, by Vanity Fair. At the age of 35, Fortune Magazine listed him as number 18 on its list of the “Fifty Most Wealthy and Powerful Mafia Bosses,” just 5 behind John Gotti. All that was to change when Michael met a beautiful dancer from California named Camille Garcia whose beauty and faith caused Michael to do the unthinkable – walk away from the mob. Nobody of his rank had ever just walked away – and lived. Until now. This former “Prince of the Mafia” is now a man on a mission determined to use the compelling experiences of his former life for the benefit of others seeking redemption and forgiveness and continues to bring record attendance to events all over the country.    ANZ forecasted a 17% growth in 2021 for housing prices 2021-04-12T04:16:01Z anz-forecasted-a-17-growth-in-2021-for-housing-prices Australian house prices are forecast to see their sharpest rise since the 1980s. ANZ bank, along with the other Big Four are tipping house prices to soar by a massive 17% cent this year across our capital cities – marking the fastest pace of growth since the late 1980s. In the first half of 2020, ANZ forecast a 10% decline in property prices. By the last quarter of 2020 they backflipped and said predicted a 10% growth. Fast forward to March 2021 and that prediction for 2021 is 17%. So far 2021 has seen a 9% national rise this year, but a number of factors have increased this forecast significantly. The property market is now booming as buyers take advantage of record-low interest rates, very low levels of immigration, government programs and money saved during the coronavirus recession. While this news may not be welcomed by first home buyers that are looking to get into the market, it however is good news for investors. Increase in property values will allow them to use the increase of equity to take advantage of rising prices and get into a growing market. Now is the time to take advantage of the opportunities the current property markets are offering. As always speak to a property expert as markets are moving on, but not all properties are going to increase in value. Download our FREE e-book and you too can take advantage of the property market. The headline of all major newspapers these days is the ‘booming property market’ but not many people are talking about how to take advantage of a booming market. Growing up you were probably taught by your parents to get a good education, a good job, buy a home, work really hard and pay off your home (place of residence) debt. You’ve heard the saying “work smarter not harder” Our parents strategy is simply not the ‘smartest’ way to build wealth in this type of economy. Similarly, it is also a great time to consider comparing and refinancing your home loan, as you could be on a much higher rate that could be available to you.   Our property markets move through cycles, from booms to busts and back again. So is now the time to buy? The fact is, any time could be a bad time for you personally to buy a property, or it could be the best time to buy! There are however some external factors that are indicating that now is a great time to invest if you are financially prepared.   Download our FREE e-book and you too can take advantage of the property market.   Recreating the early 6th Century! Period Instruments. Baroque Music. Incredible Cast. Mock Sword Fights. A unique night of music under the stars. 2021-04-08T02:32:21Z recreating-the-early-6th-century-period-instruments-baroque-music-incredible-cast-mock-sword-fights-a-unqiue-night-of-music-under-the-stars Sydney musician Jack Stephens, 25, is both the Producer and Director of tomorrow's unique outdoor performance of Purcell’s Operetta King Arthur within the grounds of Australia’s oldest University College. He is also singing one of the Bass parts and even working with the cast to pull together costumes to support the production.  Currently working to complete his Doctorate of Music from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Jack is the principal lay-clerk and Choir Tutor at St Andrew’s Cathedral and is used to singing and playing great music, having worked extensively within choral music and as a soloist.  He is also an accomplished brass player, having recently performed as a soloist in Schumann’s Konzertstück (Concerto for Four Horns) alongside Robert Johnson (Principal Horn of Sydney Symphony Orchestra). As part of his studies, he is the driving force behind this one off concert performance being performed at the University of Sydney this Friday. Purcell’s Operetta King Arthur  Hailed as one of the greatest works of western music Tells the story of King Arthur’s Britons as they battle the Saxons. Medieval re-enactment society performing mock fight scenes at the interval Unique one-off event - 7:00pm, Friday 9 April Semi-staged in the open-air Quadrangle of St Paul's College - Australia’s oldest University College within the University of Sydney  The event promises to transport the audience back to the early 6th Century- taking them on a tale of medieval adventure and mysticism.  A local medieval re-enactment society is even planning to add some additional colour at the interval, performing some energetic mock fights scenes! “This is a real cross-generational event – seasoned professionals will be pairing up with some of Australia’s best young musicians - including Soloists from Pinchgut Opera, Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, Sydney Symphony,Opera Australia and the Song Company, “ said Jack.  “In performing this extra-ordinary event, I have the privilege of working with some incredible performers including the legendary Peter Cousens, Artistic Director of the Talent Development Project Foundation, who will be narrating our version of the operetta.  “We also have some amazing soloists – all backed by an 18 period piece  orchestra,” he said. One of those soloists is the talented Chloe Lankshear, currently Principal Soloist with Pinchgut Opera, Australian Brandenburg Orchestra and the Song Company. “A highlight on Friday will be Chloe singing ‘Fairest Isle’  - one of the most loved songs throughout the world.   “I invite anyone who will be in Sydney who loves classical music to secure some of the limited tickets, grab their picnic rug, bring along some food and drinks, and be transported to medieval times and be immersed in this great sounding tale of King Arthur,” said Jack. INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITIES IN SYDNEY THIS WEEK Peter Cousens, Jack Stephens and Chloe Lankshear are available for interview this week. NOTE: Some of the cast in costume can be arranged. EVENT DETAILS Purcell’s Operetta King Arthur  When: Friday April 9 at 7pm Where: Quadrangle, St Paul's College, University of Sydney, 9 City Rd, Camperdown, NSW 2050 Cost: $40-$60 Tickets: THE PERFORMERS AND PLAYERS Conductor | Ross Cobb Concertmaster | Fiona Ziegler Narrator | Peter Cousens Soprano | Chloe Lankshear, Josie Ryan, Elise Morton Mezzo soprano | Stephanie Dillon, Hester Wright Tenor | Joshua Oxley, Elias Wilson Bass | Jeremy Boulton, Jack Stephens Violin | Fiona Ziegler, James Tarbotton Viola | Sophie Nickel Cello | Zoltán Szabo Bass | Will Hansen Harpsichord | Nathan Cox Bassoon | Harley Milano Oboe | Edward Wang, Joshua Ning Recorder | Isabelle Palmer, Aimee Brown Trumpet | Simon Wolnizer, Jonathan Baker Timpani | Adam Cooper-Stanbury     AASW – CALL FOR A RADICAL REFORM OF THE MENTAL HEALTH SYSTEM 2021-04-07T06:32:45Z aasw-call-for-a-radical-reform-of-the-mental-health-system-1 The Australian Association of Social Workers’ submission to the House of Representatives Select Committee inquiry into Mental Health and Suicide Prevention has called for government to seize the opportunity to build a more cohesive system of mental health support that will radically reform Australia’s mental health system.  AASW CEO Cindy Smith said the AASW’s extensive submission draws on decades of experience of its members working with some of the most vulnerable and marginalised people in our society and this submission and its recommendations for improvements to the mental health system are consistent with previous submissions. “Social workers have been talking about the failings of the mental health system for decades and here we are in 2021, still beset by long waiting lists to access publicly funded services, inadequate rebate amounts under Better Access, and a shortage of mental health professionals across the country.” “Among our recommendations is that all sectors of the current service system be restructured into a person centred and community based system and that government provide incentives for mental health professionals to work outside of main city centres and increase the amount of mental health support available to people who live regionally, rurally or remotely.”  Ms Smith said one of the terms of reference for the Select Committee Inquiry is to report on the findings of numerous inquiries into mental health over the years, including the Productivity Commission and Victoria’s Royal Commission, among others. “We call on the Federal Government to combine all the recommendations from these Inquiries to inform the development of the sixth National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Strategy.” “Through the development of the sixth National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Strategy we have an opportunity to radically reform the mental health system and address the social determinants of mental health, including overturning mental health stigma and discrimination currently experienced by many people.”   “As we recover from the impacts of natural disasters and the COVID-19 pandemic we are provided with a unique opportunity for immediate investment and improvement to the system that better meet the mental health needs of Australians,” she said.  To interview Cindy Smith, please contact Noel McMahon on 0413 532 954.   New app helps supermarket shoppers buy Australian made 2021-04-07T05:17:28Z new-app-helps-supermarket-shoppers-buy-australian-made A new app to help Aussie shoppers easily identify Australian-made goods, has been released. The Strayan app provides a fast, simple score of “Australian-ness” for almost a quarter of a million everyday supermarket products. Strayan is designed to inform Aussie shoppers about the origin of a product so they can choose to buy Australian. It makes reading labels and second guessing a thing of the past. When consumers have clear information, they can start making informed buying choices and create shopping lists as Aussie as they want.   It works by using the "Speedy Scanner" to scan the barcode of a product, and then provide a 0-100 score of how ‘Australian’ it is. The score is based on where ingredients are sourced, where it’s made and who owns it. At a quick glance, users can see a simple colour-coded score on the wombat logo and decide to buy - or not!    Each product is scored – no matter where it’s from – removing any ambiguity. There is no pass or fail mark. In some cases, the result may merely provide a means of comparison, and a low score may even be a consequence of unavoidable circumstances, such as the ingredients not being produced in Australia. Strayan presents the information as simply as possible and leaves it to the user to decide.    Strayan is available as a standard version allowing the user to view the scores of hundreds of thousands of products. The MAX subscription allows a user to personalise the app to their values – customising their score metrics to create a ‘MyScore’, having the options to favour or un-favour countries of origin and save favourite products to multiple lists.   Basic Standard version features: View the “Strayan score” for almost a quarter of a million everyday products from major supermarkets (Coles, Woolies, IGA, etc) and retailers Use the Speedy Scanner to quickly get the score for a product while you shop Browse categories, search, etc Strayan MAX! subscription ($12/year, only $1/month) also features: Customise the score to your own personal preferences, adjusting the importance of owned, ingredients and made are to you Favour and un-favour countries Create and save your favourite items to lists View unlimited items in the Speedy Scanner Remove advertising Support ongoing data costs and development of the app  More information, and FAQ’s can be found on the Strayan website:    A note from the founder: “Aussies love to support Australian businesses, and that support is growing. I wanted to develop an app that made it very easy for people to put Aussie products at the top of their shopping lists. This app is for those committed to buying Australian, and thus helping Aussie businesses, farmers and families. We have many features planned to materially move the needle to Aussie businesses, this is only the start.” Alex Black, Managing Director, Strayan -ENDS- See the launch blog post at  Visit the Press Centre for high resolution assets at    For more information or to interview Alex Black from Strayan, please email Myanmar Massacre: GFA World Calls For Prayer Amid Military Coup 2021-04-07T01:55:52Z myanmar-massacre-gfa-world-calls-for-prayer-amid-military-coup TOOWOOMBA, Qld -- One of Asia’s largest humanitarian agencies is calling on Christians to pray for Myanmar’s suffering people in the throes of the South Asia nation’s bloody military coup.   In the past few days, at least 114 people -- including children -- were killed across the country as protests continue against the military takeover, according to CNN. It brings the death toll so far to more than 400 since the coup began and the military seized control Feb. 1.   “As with any crisis, it’s the innocent that suffer the most,” said K.P. Yohannan, founder of GFA World. “At GFA World, we’re asking people everywhere to join us in praying for peace, justice and God’s protection over the people of Myanmar during the current turmoil.”   Yohannan also urged people to pray for the release of the leaders and protesters who’ve been detained by the military.   “Nowhere in Myanmar is safe right now,” he said. “Every single night is spent with fear, and dawn seems so hard to reach. The people are restless,  and they’re exhausted physically and mentally. Many businesses have been burned down.”   World leaders have condemned the coup and the military’s violence against the protesters. Hundreds have been arrested and detained, including members of parliament, doctors, and government officials.   “Myanmar’s people need our prayers and support more now than ever,” said Yohannan, whose Australian-based organisation helps millions of children and families across Asia through its child-sponsorship program and clean water “Jesus Wells.”   ###   GFA World is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national workers bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In GFA World’s latest yearly report, this included thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching providing hope and encouragement available in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry.     PHOTO CUTLINE: MYANMAR MASSACRE, GFA WORLD CALLS FOR PRAYER: Australia-based GFA World -- one of the largest humanitarian agencies in Asia -- is calling on Christians to pray for Myanmar’s suffering people in the throes of the South Asia nation’s bloody military coup.   BREAKING NEWS! BRIAN AMATRUDA OFFERS $1 MILLION OFFER TO TIM TSZYU TO FIGHT MICHAEL ZERAFA 2021-04-03T23:26:13Z breaking-news-brian-amatruda-offers-1-million-offer-to-tim-tszyu-to-fight-michael-zerafa BREAKING NEWS! $1 MILLION  OFFER FOR TIM TSZYU TO FIGHT MICHAEL ZERAFA Wealthy Melbourne boxing promoter Brian Amatruda  is offering Tim Tszyu one million dollars to fight Michael Zerafa in Melbourne. Tszyu’s million dollar pay day is more than his entire career earnings to date.  Multi millionaire property developer, owner of the Big Time Boxing company and functions venue The Melbourne Pavilion, Amatruda has promoted 2 World Championships fights with Anthony Mundine as well as fights with Danny Green, James Toney and a string of other world rated fighters.  Amatruda says “ I’m sick and tired of seeing Tim make excuses and avoid what is Australia’s biggest fight. Tim Tszyu v Michael Zerafa. Tim is a quality fighter but he just fought a 36 year old fighter who was coming off a brutal knock out and his second loss in a row. Hogan also had  a major injury coming into the fight and at one stage was going to withdraw.” Amatruda continues “ No discredit to Tim, but he has never fought the likes of Micheal Zerafa who is in his prime and fought the best  in the world. Not like Tim’s opponents who were just Australians, who whilst quite handy fighters will never be world champions. Tim’s talk of a world title is fanciful as the titles are all scheduled  elsewhere so why not fight the very best in Australia?” “ Dream Time promotions, Tim’s promoter offered Michael $70,000 to fight Tim. We thought about offering Tim ten times that amount, then thought let’s round it off at 1 million dollars which is probably more than Tim’s whole career earnings. If Tim thinks he is on a different level hen let’s get the fight on and he can have an easy pay day! The offer is open for 7 days otherwise Michael will look to go overseas where offers have been made for much bigger fights” concludes Brian.  TO INTERVIEW BRIAN AMATRUDA & MICHAEL ZERAFA email or call Max Markson 0412 501 601 AASW – CALL FOR FIVE YEAR FUNDING CERTAINTY TO AID RECOVERY 2021-04-01T03:47:02Z aasw-call-for-five-year-funding-certainty-to-aid-recovery The Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW) submission to the Senate Select Committee on Job Security is calling for governments at all levels to commit to a five year funding certainty for the precarious community services sector, as the nation recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic and recent devastating natural disasters. AASW National President, Vittorio Cintio said that on a daily basis social workers see the distressing and harmful impact that job insecurity has on the people they work with, their families and the broader community, yet the nature of community sector funding means is that many social workers themselves do not have security in their own work. “The community services sector, and social workers in particular, have done so much of the heavy lifting in supporting Australians through recent crises, supporting women and children in situations of family violence, meeting the mental health needs of the community, and preventing some of our most vulnerable people from falling into homelessness.” “While social workers are reporting ever increasing demand for their services and are struggling to keep up with the pressure and stress, without the certainty of their own employment they are in a very precarious and unstable position themselves.” Mr Cintio said social workers are a predominantly female workforce, that is lower paid than other industries and the cumulative lifetime effects of this job insecurity can be devastating. “The tendency now is for newly created jobs to be contract and/or casual is having a detrimental impact on worker’s wellbeing and government needs to take a holistic approach to ensuring people have stable, secure and appropriately remunerated employment.” “Many social workers are employed on contracts tied to short term government funding, some for as short as one year. This hampers their ability to plan for their future and to effectively deliver services and improvements that workers in other industries take for granted.” “It also makes the retention of experienced and highly skilled staff in the community sector difficult, particularly in already under resourced regional and rural areas of Australia. And this job insecurity can impact the wellbeing of those we as a community rely on to support those in need.”  “All workers deserve security, stability and to be paid appropriately for their work. The community sector deserves this too and as a matter of urgency. We urge governments to implement five-year funding contracts as a priority in upcoming Budgets to deliver certainty to a struggling sector,” he said. To interview Vittorio Cintio, please contact Noel McMahon on 0413 532 954. New Initiative to Tackle the Growing Problem of Commercial Furniture Waste 2021-03-31T08:22:59Z new-initiative-to-tackle-the-growing-problem-of-commercial-furniture-waste On 15 March 2021, in collaboration with Edge Environment and the Global Product Stewardship Council, GECA was awarded a grant by the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment to tackle the issue of commercial office furniture going to landfill. The group will use the funding to design a product stewardship scheme that will help reduce the estimated 30,000 tonnes of furniture – much of it in perfectly good condition – that ends up in Australia's waste stream each year.  Announcing the funding, Minister Trevor Evans said, “The Australian Government have recently provided more than $370,000 to Edge Environment and its partners to develop, in consultation with industry, a commercial furniture product stewardship scheme. When it comes to commercial furniture, we’re talking about a large amount of both textile and plastic waste across the lifecycle of these products from storage and delivery through to the actual components in the furniture. We’re excited to get behind this new scheme which focuses on waste streams that are priorities for our government.” According to Paula Clasby, Head of Engagement & Marketing at GECA, "All of GECA's robust ecolabelling standards include product stewardship criteria, emphasising the value of decreasing contribution to landfill and increasing the reuse and recycling rate of the product at the end of its life. However, there have been many challenges when implementing best practice product stewardship here in Australia. Along with our licensees, we are thrilled at the opportunity this grant will bring to support a successful product stewardship scheme for commercial office furniture, working with all entities involved to create real impact. We're proud to be part of this collaboration and solution to induce change." Commenting on the award, Edge CEO, Jonas Bengtsson, said "We've worked on the issue of fitout waste for many years, and despite great leaps forward in diverting materials such as carpet, glass and plasterboard, furniture has remained a stubbornly hard nut to crack. With this funding, we have the opportunity to create a solution that, with the support of property companies, contractors, and furniture companies alike, with the potential to improve environmental outcomes, drive economic benefits and create hundreds, if not thousands, of jobs." John Polhill, Vice President of the Global Product Stewardship Council and Principal of Circular-e solutions commented, "Responsible commercial furniture disposal is something that government and industry has been looking to achieve for a number of years now, but in essence has been limited and fragmented. Product stewardship provides a framework to identify and address market failures and a structure whereby organisations can work collaboratively and efficiently to design a common and targeted stewardship scheme that improves the reuse and recycling of furniture from commercial properties in Australia." The project is due to kick off in April and will run until 2023.    --ENDS –  About the partners: GECA At GECA, we are a purpose-driven not-for-profit that stands for integrity, independence, and impact. Our mission is to create solutions for sustainable consumption and production. To achieve this, we offer a suite of services designed for anyone committed to continuous improvement in their sustainability, including Australia's only not-for-profit multi-sector ecolabelling program. Following ISO 14024 principles and ISEAL frameworks for global best practice in lifecycle-based ecolabelling, we've developed our rigorous voluntary standards, which are then independently assessed by our Assurance Providers. Our robust standards are relevant to critical Australian industries, and GECA is the only Australian member of the Global Ecolabelling Network (GEN). GECA is widely respected and recognised in Australia and globally by green building schemes, including Green Star, WELL, ISCA, NABERS, as well as many procurement channels in government, education, hospitality, business, and consumer. For more information, see Edge Environment Established in 2008, Edge is a specialist sustainability advisory company focussed on Asia-Pacific and the Americas. Our teams are based in Australia, New Zealand and Chile. We exist to help our clients create value from tackling one of the world's most fundamental challenges: creating truly sustainable economies and societies. We do this by combining science, strategy and storytelling in a way that gives our clients the confidence to take ambitious action and do well by doing good. For more information, see  Global Product Stewardship Council (GlobalPSC) GlobalPSC is an independent, not-for-profit forum for product stewardship. Its membership spans ten countries and includes producers, product recovery organisations, NGOs and governments. For the last ten years, GlobalPSC has been researching, assessing and disseminating all stages in the development of schemes. For more information, see  50th anniversary of barcode today-31 March 2021 2021-03-30T22:20:40Z 50th-anniversary-of-barcode-today-31-march-2021 Fifty years ago, on 31 March 1971, leaders from the biggest names in commerce came together and transformed the global economy forever by developing the Global Trade Item Number (known as the 'GTIN'). This numerical code uniquely identifies every single product and is the core of the barcode, the most important supply chain standard in history. Today, the barcode is scanned over six billion times every day and remains one of the most trusted symbols in the world.Watch video about this important anniversary (and the future): Palazzolo, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of GS1 Australia said, "I firmly believe that the digitalisation of the GTIN is one of the most significant milestones in the life of our organisation."From the linear EAN/UPC barcode to 2DBarcodes, the need to capture more than just product and pricing information is becoming more urgent and increasingly important. In order to do this successfully we must bring industry together to collaborate and to harmonise. The journey into the future has well and truly begun."GS1 standards such as the barcode continue to help make the vast complexity of modern, global business flow quickly, efficiently and securely, simplifying all kinds of supply chain processes in almost every sector all around the world. However, as consumers demand more and better product information, it is time to bring barcodes to the next level. Developments towards next-generation barcodes (for example square barcodes like QR codes), which can hold vastly more information, should be used to empower consumers with trusted information and reshape global commerce, just as the GTIN did half a century ago.50 years agoThe 1971 historic meeting took place in New York City and included leaders from the biggest names in groceries, retail and consumer goods at the time, including Heinz, General Mills, Kroger and Bristol Meyer. The executives agreed to create a system to uniquely identify every single product, calling it the Global Trade Item Number, or GTIN. With great foresight, they believed that the GTIN could have a positive impact even beyond the grocery store - from warehouses to board rooms - and would boost speed and efficiency of transactions and processes that could transform everything from supply chains to consumer experiences. And they agreed at the meeting to continue to innovate together to create a system that would benefit businesses and consumers alike. Decades later, the BBC named the resulting outcome one of "the 50 things that made the world economy." More information and quotes are in the attached media release.TO INTERVIEW Maria Palazzolo, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, GS1 Australia or Marcel Sieira, Chief Customer Officer, GS1 Australia please contact: Marian Makram-Perkins T: 03 8581 5940 E: marian.makram-perkins@gs1au.orgAbout GS1 Australia GS1 is a neutral, not-for-profit organisation that develops and maintains the most widely used global standards for efficient business communication. We are best known for the barcode, named by the BBC as one of "the 50 things that made the world economy". GS1 standards and services improve the efficiency, safety and visibility of supply chains across physical and digital channels in 25 sectors. With local Member Organisations in 114 countries, 2 million user companies and 6 billion transactions every day, GS1 standards create a common language that supports systems and processes across the globe. For more information visit the GS1 Australia website: Geelong Community Group calls on Government to reject gas terminals 2021-03-30T08:51:10Z geelong-community-group-calls-on-government-to-reject-gas-terminals Community group Geelong Sustainability (GS) says the Victorian Government’s rejection of a floating gas terminal in Westernport on environmental grounds shows why proposals for similar terminals in and near Corio Bay should also be rejected. Spokesperson Sally Fisher says “Not only do these proposals point to how damaging such terminals can be to Corio Bay and the nearby Ramsar Wetlands off Avalon but the demand for gas is falling and may virtually disappear because it can’t compete with renewables or green hydrogen.” “The State Government’s decision is a clear pointer to how damaging these terminals can be and we are very concerned for Corio Bay,” she said. A summary of the Government’s report says that marine discharges from the proposed floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) will result in ongoing stress to the environment over the 20 year life of the project. The report says the adverse direct and indirect effects of that discharge on environmental values, fundamental to the Ramsar status of Western Port are not compatible with the level of protection required in a wetland of recognised international significance. The two terminals proposed in Geelong are also close to, or situated within, Ramsar sites at Point Wilson/Limeburner's Bay and the shoreline of Avalon. Meanwhile the Australian Energy Market Operator, in its annual gas statement of opportunities, says future demand for gas does not list a single situation where gas demand increases over the next 20 years. “Rather the report says it is more likely that small and large consumers will choose electric options powered by renewables, rather than gas,” Ms Fisher said. About Geelong Sustainability Geelong Sustainability is a dynamic and passionate community group focused on sharing information, building community resilience, advocating for the environment and supporting effective action for a low carbon future. For more information visit Aboriginal Women: Time to Change Your Future 2021-03-29T23:27:45Z aboriginal-women-time-to-change-your-future In 2014, ABC News stated that ‘Aboriginal women are forty-eight times more likely to be hospitalised from family violence and almost eleven times more likely to be killed as a result of violent assault.’[1] This statement engendered discussions that Aboriginal women are probably, the most legally disadvantaged group in Australia. For Tina Haywood, author of recently published, We are Warriors: An Aboriginal Woman’s Life, the word, disadvantaged, is offensive. ‘I stand against violence against women and children,’ Tina passionately states, ‘and this affliction transcends colour and creed.’ Nevertheless, Tina shares raw and disturbing insights, in her debut publication, about being one of these Aboriginal women. Growing up, her father was quick with his fists and his verbal abuse to all family members. Further, Tina was sexually abused at a young age by someone claiming to be a friend to the family. Yet, despite such a traumatic upbringing, Tina has found the strength and determination to rise up from an environment that could have trapped her in a spiral of depression and substance abuse; a legacy that overwhelms many Aboriginal women. Yet, when searching for more information on statistics, data is outdated. In fact, The Conversation, undertook a fact-check in 2016, on the above ABC quote, and as reported by Professor Marcia Langton[2], at that time, the Federal Government should have made this malaise, ‘a high-priority issue’. Tina agrees with this, but also states that a movement about this should be self-engineered. As she explains in her memoir, everyone reaches a point trying to figure out what on earth to do with their life stating that, ‘It’s up to each of us to take control of our lives.’ Tina, who now works for the Department of Defence, is determined to spread the message to all Aboriginal women. By sharing her story, she wants to lead by example and hopes to provide guidance and encouragement. [1] ABC News Australian Broadcast (2014), Aboriginal women 48 times more likely to be hospitalised for assault ABC News Australian Broadcast, viewed October 2020, <https://YouTube/w-UKFQo4uE0> [2] The Conversation (2016), FactCheck Q&A: are Indigenous women 34-80 times more likely than average to experience violence?, viewed October 2020, <> Gartner Identifies Top 10 Government Technology Trends for 2021 2021-03-29T03:16:59Z gartner-identifies-top-10-government-technology-trends-for-2021 Sydney, 29 March 2021 — Research and advisory firm Gartner has published a list of the top 10 government technology trends for 2021 that have the potential to accelerate digital innovation and optimise or transform public services.Gartner’s top 10 strategic technology trends for government this year arise from the challenges wrought from the pandemic and the need for flexible operating models that support significant disruptions.“The COVID-19 pandemic has spurred the acceleration of digital innovation across the government sector around the world, presenting government leaders with new opportunities to use data and technologies to build trust, agility and resilience in public institutions,” said Rick Howard, research vice president at Gartner. “While pandemic-related challenges will continue for some time, technology trends have emerged that address critical challenges in areas such as security, cost containment and citizen experience.”Gartner’s list of strategic technology trends is directly linked to public administration and policy issues that government leaders must address. Government CIOs can use this list to identify technology trends that best address their post-pandemic recovery priorities and establish the rationale, timing and priority of technology investments. Accelerated Legacy ModernisationGovernments have experienced the limitations and risks posed by decades-old legacy infrastructure and core systems. To be better equipped to deal with the next disruption, government CIOs are accelerating the move to modern, modular architectures. While the need for legacy modernisation is not new to government CIOs, the challenges related to the pandemic have only served to heighten the awareness of the resulting risks and the need for it.Gartner predicts that by 2025, over 50% of government agencies will have modernised critical core legacy applications to improve resilience and agility. Adaptive SecurityAn adaptive security approach treats risk, trust and security as a continuous and adaptive process that anticipates and mitigates constantly evolving cyber threats. This approach features components for prediction, prevention, detection and response. It forgoes traditional notions of perimeter, assuming there is no boundary for safe and unsafe, a necessary conceptual shift given the migration to cloud services. Gartner predicts that 75% of government CIOs will be directly responsible for security outside of IT by 2025, to include operational and mission-critical technology environments. Anything as a Service (XaaS)XaaS is a cloud-only sourcing strategy that embraces acquiring the full range of business and IT services on a subscription basis. Pandemic response and the critical need for digital service delivery have exacerbated pressures to modernise legacy applications and infrastructure. XaaS offers an alternative to legacy infrastructure modernisation, provides scalability and reduces time to deliver digital services. Gartner predicts that 95% of new IT investments made by government agencies will be made as a service solution by 2025. Case Management as a Service (CMaaS)Case work is the predominant workstyle of government, with the entire legacy-heavy portfolio of monolithic case management point solutions found in many departments. CMaaS is a new way to build institutional agility by applying composable business principles and practices, to replace legacy case management systems with modular products that can be rapidly assembled, disassembled and recomposed in response to changing business needs.Gartner predicts that by 2024, government organisations with a composable case management application architecture will implement new features at least 80% faster than those without. Citizen Digital IdentityDigital identity is the ability to prove an individual’s identity via any government digital channel that is available to citizens, which is critical for inclusion and access to government services. Digital identity ecosystems are quickly evolving and leading governments to assume new roles and responsibilities. The topic is high on political agendas, so government CIOs must link digital identity to salient use cases. Gartner predicts that a true global, portable, decentralised identity standard will emerge in the market by 2024, to address business, personal, social and societal, and identity-invisible use cases. Composable Government EnterpriseThe composable government enterprise is any government organisation that adopts composable design principles. This enables them to extend the reuse of capabilities and continuously adapt to changing regulatory, legislative and public expectations. CIOs are embracing composable government to overcome existing, siloed approaches to managing services, systems and data that limit the ability of governments to adapt to the rapidly evolving needs of the emerging digital society.Gartner predicts that 50% of technology companies that provide products and services to the government will offer packaged business capabilities to support composable applications by 2023. Data Sharing as a ProgramData sharing is often ad hoc in government, driven by high-profile use cases such as child protection incidents or gender violence that cannot easily be generalised. Data sharing as a program moves it into being a scalable service, with multiple reusable capabilities, supporting the drive toward more composable approaches in government service delivery.Gartner predicts by 2023, 50% of government organisations will establish formal accountability structures for data sharing, including standards for data structure, quality and timeliness. Hyperconnected Public ServicesHyperconnected public services is the whole-of-government use of multiple technologies, tools or platforms to automate as many business and IT processes as possible. Government CIOs can use hyperautomation principles and practices to develop hyperconnected, highly automated end-to-end business processes and public services that require minimal human intervention.Gartner predicts that by 2024, 75% of governments will have at least three enterprise-wide hyperautomation initiatives launched or underway. Multichannel Citizen EngagementCitizen direct participation with governments reached new heights in 2020 as communities dealt with the pandemic, wildfires, hurricanes and other events. Multichannel citizen engagement is a seamless, bidirectional engagement with constituents across organisational boundaries, while delivering a personalised experience using the preferred and most effective channels to reach them. Gartner predicts that over 30% of governments will use engagement metrics to track quantity and quality of citizen participation in policy and budget decisions by 2024. Operationalised AnalyticsOperationalised analytics is the strategic and systematic adoption of data-driven technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and advanced analytics, at each stage of government activity to improve the efficiency, effectiveness and consistency of decision making. Decision makers can make better context-based operational decisions in real-time to improve the quality of the citizen experience.Gartner predicts that by 2024, 60% of government AI and data analytics investments aim to directly impact real-time operational decisions and outcomes. Gartner clients can learn more in the report “Top Technology Trends in Government for 2021” and in the companion report “Top Business Trends in Government for 2021.” About the Gartner Information Technology PracticeThe Gartner IT practice provides CIOs and IT leaders with the insights and tools to drive the organisation through digital transformation to lead business growth. Additional information is available at Follow news and updates from the Gartner IT practice on Twitter and LinkedIn using #GartnerIT. About GartnerGartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT) is the world’s leading research and advisory company and a member of the S&P 500. We equip business leaders with indispensable insights, advice and tools to achieve their mission-critical priorities and build the successful organisations of tomorrow.Our unmatched combination of expert-led, practitioner-sourced and data-driven research steers clients toward the right decisions on the issues that matter most. We are a trusted advisor and an objective resource for more than 14,000 organisations in more than 100 countries — across all major functions, in every industry and organisation size.To learn more about how we help decision makers fuel the future of business, visit # # # GRAVE CONCERNS OVER PASSAGE OF CHILD PROTECTION AND OTHER LEGISLATION AMENDMENT BILL 2020 (QLD) 2021-03-24T05:36:59Z grave-concerns-over-passage-of-child-protection-and-other-legislation-amendment-bill-2020-qld Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW) Chief Executive Officer Cindy Smith and Queensland Branch President Yasmin Dunn have described the passage of the Child Protection and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2020 (QLD) as a missed opportunity to protect the best interest of vulnerable children and their families. The AASW made two submissions to the Inquiry of this Bill and is afraid that its concerns and those of other community organisations have been ignored and the legislation that passed the Queensland Parliament yesterday (23 March) may have an unintended consequence of expediting adoptions, instead of prioritising the best interest of children. CEO Cindy Smith said the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of the Child, makes it very clear that ‘the child for the full and harmonious development of his or her personality, should grow up in a family environment, in an atmosphere of happiness, love and understanding’. “Governments have a responsibility in the first instance to concentrate efforts on creating such environments in which children and families are supported and assisted, so that the various factors that contribute to the need for child protection intervention by the state is substantially reduced.” “Adoption does not address the underlying cause of child protection intervention and what is needed is more resources for frontline support for vulnerable families, to prevent child protection issues arising at all.” Queensland Branch President Yasmin Dunn said access to appropriate supports, case planning and casework is the priority and what is needed, and adoption should only be considered as one of the possible responses after all other options for achieving the child’s safety are thoroughly explored. “By enshrining adoption as an option for vulnerable children in the Child Protection Act 1999 (QLD), the bill runs a high risk of streamlining and fast-tracking adoption. This will disproportionately impact Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander children who are already over represented in the out of home care system.” “Before making further amendments to the Child Protection Act 1999 (QLD), we recommend the Queensland Government to undertake further consultation with Aboriginal community controlled organisations and experts and invest in early intervention programs, family support services and the child protection workforce,” she said. To interview Cindy Smith or Yasmin Dunn, please contact Noel McMahon on 0413 532 954. Introducing TrustGrid™, the World’s First Secure Digital Ecosystem 2021-03-24T03:12:03Z introducing-trustgrid-the-world-s-first-secure-digital-ecosystem Australia, – Today, TrustGrid Pty Ltd announced the worldwide launch of TrustGrid™, the world’s first digital trust ecosystem. With a high degree of privacy, security, and integrity, the solution facilitates technology interfaces between government entities and private organisations, providing services to suppliers, end users, customers, citizens, and constituents.   TrustGrid™ enables government, enterprise and organisations to create secure digital ecosystems available through a software-as-a-service (SaaS) model, anywhere in the world with sovereign control of data and maximized citizen privacy. This outcome can be delivered with unlimited scale and unprecedented speed.    The growth of online cybersecurity, data and identity theft has reached epidemic proportions, and is quickly becoming the crime of the new millennium. The global fraud detection and prevention market was valued at USD 18.24 billion in 2020 and expected to reach USD 40.8 billion by 2026 with a CAGR of 18.17% over the forecast period (2021-2026).   Four years in the making, TrustGrid™ is powered by emerging distributed ledger technology, known as blockchain, and a unique patent-pending fabric that interoperates with legacy services and microservices relevant to various use cases within the government and private sector. TrustGrid™ has effectively orchestrated multiple state of the art technologies into a single platform.   TrustGrid™ combines innovative cryptography, data privacy, confidential computing, and distributed ledger technologies into a highly customizable digital ecosystem platform. This solution can be delivered with unlimited scale and with unprecedented speed.   Santosh Devaraj, CEO and founder of TrustGrid Pty Ltd said, “We have invested almost five years into the development of this world’s first technology that will solve a global crisis of security in data and digital identity. TrustGrid™ is bringing to market a digital ecosystem that’s empowering individuals worldwide to take back total control of their digital identity, personal data and how they are used and verified by external constituents, in both public and private entities.”    “Calling upon our many years of expertise in cybersecurity, TrustGrid™ is available digitally worldwide as a SaaS model, enabling organisations to create secure digital ecosystems from anywhere in the world with sovereign control of data and maximised citizen privacy, delivered with unlimited scale and unprecedented speed.”   The surge in cyber and identity crimes has accelerated the need for faster, smarter, and more secure privacy and authentication digital solutions on a government, enterprise and citizen level. TrustGrid™ addresses these challenges by unleashing a high degree of privacy, security, and integrity via a distributed trust network. This simplifies the management of shared information, delivers superior confidentiality and enables government agencies to access and use critical public sector data while maintaining the privacy and security of citizens’ data.   TrustGrid™ use cases ·       Digital Services TrustGrid™ covers government services such as KYC, online voting, digital license, birth/marriage/death certificates and other municipal needs. This would include asset ownership and digital educational accreditations.   ·       Digital Supply Chain TrustGrid™ can provide end to end security, authenticity and integrity of any supply chain. Effective assurance and management of any product can be enabled right from the origin point of manufacture. Verification and authentication of both the product and any persons involved in supply chain handling and administration can be securely enabled.   ·       Vaccinations and Health Records TrustGrid™ enables privacy-preserved tracking of vaccinations and health records, allowing people and organisations to reliably present health-based proofs with ultimate confidentiality.   Other features of TrustGrid™ include multiple Azure/AWS regions, integrate with your identity systems, library of ready-to-go use cases, mobile app templates, automated consortium creation and management ability.  Learn more about the power and promise of TrustGrid™ at:     ENDS   About TrustGrid Pty Ltd   Santosh Devaraj is the CEO and founder of TrustGrid Pty Ltd. Drawing upon his many years of commercial and technical experience in cybersecurity, TrustGrid™ is his personal brainchild to solve the challenge of secure digital ecosystems.   TrustGrid™ enables governments and organisations to create secure digital ecosystems anywhere in the world with sovereign control of data and maximised citizen privacy. We can deliver this outcome with unlimited scale and unprecedented speed. TrustGrid™ orchestrates multiple state-of-the-art technologies into a single platform, combining innovative cryptography, data privacy, confidential computing and distributed ledger technology into a highly customizable digital ecosystem platform. For more information, please visit: