Latest National news

The long, hard road to empowering Indigenous Australia

Michael Gordon 12:15 AM   It is one word that has proved hard to define and impossible to deliver, but it has underpinned almost every substantial discussion about closing the gap on Indigenous disadvantage and achieving reconciliation.

'Tell us if Immigration is leaving Belconnen'

Member for Fraser Andrew Leigh says moving Immigration Department from Belconnen will have a devastating impact on the town centre's small businesses.

Phillip Thomson 8:27 PM   Andrew Leigh concerned department could slip announcement into May federal budget.

Union boss tells how Centrelink worker was violently assaulted

CPSU national secretary Nadine Flood.

Phillip Thomson 8:19 PM   Community and Public Sector Union national secretary Nadine Flood says a Centrelink worker suffered received spinal damage after being assaulted by a customer.

ATO retreats from pay vote

The ATO has been under the spotlight recently for the way it treats individuals and small business taxpayers.

Noel Towell 11:30 PM   The Australian Taxation Office's bosses have moved to avoid a crushing defeat on a proposed new pay deal.

Germanwings crash wrap

French gendarmes and investigators work amongst the debris of the Airbus A320 at the site of the crash, near Seyne-les-Alpes, French Alps March 26, 2015.  A young German co-pilot locked himself alone in the cockpit of Germanwings flight 9525 and set it on course to crash into an Alpine mountain, killing all 150 people on board including himself, prosecutors said on Thursday. French prosecutors offered no motive for why 27-year-old Andreas Lubitz apparently took the controls of the Airbus A320, locked the captain out of the cockpit and deliberately set it veering down from cruising altitude at 3,000 feet per minute.   REUTERS/Emmanuel Foudrot

Peter Hartcher 11:45 PM   Aviation authorities around the world scramble to deal with the security quandary posed by the Germanwings air tragedy.

Gone with a text. The demise and possible rise of unions

Tim Kennedy, national secretary of the National Union of Workers, is attempting a revival of the historic union mission.

Ben Schneiders 12:15 AM   Some days Sam Prouting would only know he had work when a text message flashed on his phone after 6am, just 15 minutes before his shift was due to start

How SpongeBob Squarepants was brought to life in Australia

The superhero 3D versions of SpongeBob and his friends were created by Melbourne effects house Iloura.

Karl Quinn 4:46 PM   He was born and raised in Bikini Bottom, but the 3D CGI version of "SpongeBob Squarepants" was created in Melbourne.

Win a Nikon AFC Champions League sports photography workshop & press pass

WIN: A sports photography workshop with Fairfax photographer and Nikon-Walkey Award winner Brendan Esposito, and press pass for an AFC Champions League match.

4:06 PM   Your chance to photograph the Western Sydney Wanderers from the sidelines of an AFC Champions League match.

Close combat: Lloyd v Flood

Public Service Commisioner John Lloyd

Phillip Thomson 1:06 PM   Public service commissioner debated union official Nadine Flood early Friday morning. And they didn't hold back.

Field of dreams

MCG head groundsman Tony Gordon is responsible for  ensuring the city's most hallowed turf is perfect for the Cricket World Cup final.

Dugald Jellie 12:15 AM   While everyone else's hopes and dreams rise and fall with the action at the MCG, the head groundsman sees only the turf.

Chalking up tales of random kindness on a road that sometimes seems just mean

Homeless in Fitzroy Gardens: We've all met people who treat you like a nuisance, and would be rather you were on your way.

Tony Wright 12:15 AM   Few of us feel we have the power to change the world, but we do have the means to improve small parts of it, bit by bit.

Low pay offer hurt ADF's fighting edge say ADFA academics


Noel Towell 11:05 AM   Miserly pay approach potential threat to 'operational success', academics argue.

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'Cult of the lifer' is corrosive, says Pezzullo

Immigration Department head Michael Pezzullo.

Phillip Thomson 10:02 AM   Departmental loyalty at all costs is corrosive, says immigration boss who reveals brick wall he faced on rise to the top.

Concern over slow response to dangerous electric cable recall

Ann Savery and John Barbaric had hazardous Infinity cables installed in their renovated house, prompting them to rewire.

Esther Han 9:57 AM   Electricians are blaming the consumer watchdog for the slow industry and community response to an urgent recall of dodgy electrical cables that could start burning down homes in nine months time.

Doctor pioneered integration of psychiatry into hospital practice

Geoffrey Conron

Geoffrey Conron was a pioneering doctor whose work helped integrate psychiatry into mainstream hospitals.

Shape: Designs for life

Field Experiments: Indonesia

Dan Rule   The week's news from Melbourne's architecture and design scene.

Hard to pin down: Callum Morton's new set for the Melbourne Theatre Company

Callum Morton on the set he designed for the Melbourne Theatre Company production of <i>Endgame</i>.

Bhakthi Puvanenthiran   In an age where design is elevated to the same status as art, Callum Morton happily flits between the two.

Lest we forget about work on Monday

ANZAC Day - generic photo

Noel Towell   Thousands of federal public servants in have been handed an extra public holiday on Monday, April 27, while other are expected at their desks.

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No stem cell treatment for public servant's dodgy knee

Driving in a way that puts at risk the safety of a vulnerable road user - such as a cyclist - will attract heavy fines, disqualification or even jail time.

Noel Towell   Former triathlete offered double-knee replacement instead.

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Government backs down from APS super

Superannuation is now off the bargaining table for APS agreements.

Noel Towell   APS super off the table but battle over wages and conditions continues with both sides talking tough.

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Public servants caught in the middle on metadata laws

Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young.

Phillip Thomson   Claims new metadata retention laws would make public servants both the perpetrators and victims of intrusive information gathering.

Switching back from smartphones to dumb phones

Nick Fuentes with his beloved Nokia 208 after breaking so many smartphones.

Peter Munro 11:45 PM   Abandoning your smartphone for an older-style mobile phone frees you to pay more attention to the world around you.

Business rejects unions' push for minimum wage rise

Unions are calling for the weekly minimum wage to be increased.

Nick Toscano   Australian unions will push for a wage rise of $27 a week for the nation's lowest-paid workers, while business warn that granting the above-inflation claim will force job cuts.

WikiLeaks reveals local health and environment rules under threat

Trade Minister Andrew Robb says the Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are at "a make-or-break point" over the next month.

Philip Dorling   Australian health, environment and public welfare regulation, including plain tobacco packaging legislation will be open for challenge from largely US-based corporation, if a new ¬†deal that is part of the Trans Pacific Partnership goes through.¬†


Carolyn Boyd   This week's cover property offers a vista of the whole city.

Changing culture: When good cops tackle bad cops

Victoria Police is investigating systemic sexual harassment within the force.

John Silvester 12:15 AM   Sexual predators in the Victoria Police have used their rank and a code of silence to protect themselves from exposure and punishment.

Playing at parenting: fun for the whole family

We need to let go of our maturity from time to time, discard our notions of what it means to be a grown up and to allow playfulness into the time we spend with our children.

Lauren Knight   Curiosity is an underrated quality in parenting but as we grow older, we tend to replace it with a need to be right, to have all the answers.

Online sale of breast milk must be regulated: experts

The trade of breast milk sold online is flourishing.

Esther Han   Breast milk sold on the internet is rarely screened for diseases and is a clear health risk, say researchers in London.

Kitchen Spy: Belinda Jeffery

Portrait of award winning Cookbook 
author Belinda Jeffery in her kitchen in her Mullumbimby home.

Wed 13th Aug 2014 pic by Natalie 

Peter Barrett   Broadcaster, author and cooking teacher Belinda Jeffery has a well-stocked kitchen ready for hungry people who drop by.