Deep North Dispatch #5

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A weekly wrap of what’s been happening across the Top End news-wise, which might be handy for former residents who really miss reading about this sort of thing. May contain cane toads and/or crocodiles.

Brokeback Territory

Territorians are more likely to injure themselves during sex than any other Australians, according to an Adultshop survey. Many have suffered bruises, bites and broken bones, with some injuries being severe enough to require a visit to the hospital.

Source: Sunday Territorian

Death Beds

After months of denying emergency room overcrowding was a problem Royal Darwin Hospital, health officials have admitted that ‘bed block’ may have contributed to a patient’s death. A coronial investigation into the female patient’s death will be reviewed in light of the admission.

Source: NT News

Smoke Joke

The Territory government won’t be banning smoking in pubs and clubs. All other Australian states will have bans in place by July 2007. “We are not going to do it just because they are,” Family and Community Services Minister Delia Lawrie said, establishing the Territory government as firm favourtie to take out this year’s Dirty Ashtray Award. The award highlights government inaction in tackling high smoking rates.

Source: NT News

Food Bill

The Territory Government has paid $100 000 to developer Warren Anderson in defamation damages. In 2003 the government wrongly accused the multi-millionaire of leaving exotic animals at his Tipperary wildlife sanctuary to starve. Anderson is also taking legal action against NT Police for ‘man-handling’ him at gunpoint after a tip-off that he had a weapon. A licensed rifle, locked in a case, was found on the back seat of his rental vehicle.

Source: NT News

Pets Grounded

Jetstar has confirmed Territorians will not be able to take pets on the airline’s flights. The budget airline will take over most of Qantas’ routes, leaving no animal freight service.

Source: NT News

Muddle Schools

The government has vowed not to bow to pressure and push ahead with its plan to introduce ‘middle-schooling’ at the start of next year. Parents, teachers and students fear the reform is being rushed.

Source: NT News

One Liners

81% of Darwin residents don’t know their neighbours, according to an AAMI survey.

72% of Territorians feel good about the year ahead, according to a Sensis report.

A consumer survey shows Territorians opt for Thai food when eating out, going against the national trend for Chinese or Italian meals.

The Darwin RSPCA may put up a sign warning people not to throw animals over their fence after the third such incident in six months.

Solid monsoonal rain across the Top End this week has boosted hopes of a decent wet season after a below-average start.

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Ken Parish
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Ken Parish(@ken-parish)
15 years ago

I am astounded about the middle school plan, so astounded that I’m thinking, they won’t really do it, they’re just tricking.

Uh, uh, jen – reality override – people really are that stupid, or self – interested, or shortsighted. And most of them probably believe in God or goodness or Buddha or something! Maybe they play tennis or footy, do yoga or mow lawns, they live here in Darwin with me and us other humans.

Why would they do this? I cry and sob.

I am a teacher here and the mother of a student in year 6. My daughter is not prepared to leave her primary school and walk into another school that is ill prepared to take her.

Our schools have neither the expert ot physical expertise to instantly transform themselves across the board into middle or senior schools open for business next January!

Who’d believe it!
Why the big hurry?
Why a token consultation period of 14 days?
What’s the problem with being a little incremental, with allowing a more elastic time frame, with allowing for more community consultation?