CounterAct provides training, capacity building and resources to environmental and social justice campaigners across Australia.

Campaigns


My Health Record – Opting out

Posted on July 19th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, Case study, News, Surveillance. No Comments

People in this country have demonstrated the level of trust they have in government by crashing websites and call systems with 20 000 people opting out of #MyHealthRecord in the first day and many thousands more since then. Numerous people have found out they have had records set up without their active consent and huge concerns about privacy have been raised.

We are providing a round up for you to enable an informed decision. As we support and train advocates and activists we have become more aware of the huge issue of digital privacy and how little the average person seems aware of, let alone the activist community. We want to help improve literacy in this area, and encourage more discussion regarding the extensive surveillance and data harvesting undertaken by government and corporates.

You can check out the huge compilation of concerns … Read More »



Art and protest – If a tree falls

Posted on May 14th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, News, Resources. No Comments

Eloise joined our team this year, and writes about her experience as an invited artist, to Tarkine in Motion

This year I attended Tarkine in Motion, ran by the Bob Brown Foundation, who are campaigning for 450 000 hectares of forest and coast to be declared a National Park and World Heritage Area. The event, now in it’s fourth year, sees artists venture into the north west corner of Tasmania, to document, experience, and be inspired by the beautiful wilderness that is the Takayna/Tarkine.

At the Arthur River camp the first thing I can hear is the distant roar of the ocean. It’s the end of the day and sunset isn’t far off, but I really want to go down to the waves. Slipping away before anyone can follow me, I crawl through the knotted scrub near the camp, climb over … Read More »



Climate Justice Legals Network – LAUNCH

Posted on March 4th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, Legal, News. No Comments

Exciting times! We have been doing this work informally for many years – providing activists with information and legal resources for being involved in safe, peaceful protest.

From brand new activists unsure of how to organise rallies and marches, to farmers who were considering peaceful resistance for the first time, we’ve tried to ensure that anyone participating in environmental and climate justice campaigns has the information for safe, and effective actions.

And there is a greater need than ever before with numerous state governments prioritising business instead of communities in laws that infringe on freedom of assembly, freedom of speech and other activities part of every day advocacy and change making.

SO – we decided it was well overdue to formalise this work – and open up a pathway for legal professionals  to support campaigns for environmental and climate justice. Join us, to … Read More »



Being an ally on Jan 26 and beyond

Posted on January 25th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, News, Resources. No Comments

First off. Listen.

That is what we are doing. And we aren’t writing this to centre our own experiences – we are writing it because we take the time to try and follow and listen to a range of aboriginal voices, and we might have access to information that you haven’t come across. We want to take away from emotional labour of aboriginal people by supporting other allies with a collation of useful information.

So that is the first step. Its not about us, its not about you, it’s about mob. (Photos from Naarm – Melbourne rally here)

And guess what – they have got different views. Like white people, or people descended from Sudan, or Vietnam, or people all named Becky.

Please don’t be like Friendlyjordies and attribute all aboriginal voices to one or two people. (Or maybe don’t be like Friendly jordies … Read More »



Beeliar – one year on

Posted on January 12th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, Case study. No Comments

We recently returned to the area that the community defended as part of the campaign to defend the Beeliar Wetlands from the Roe Highway extension.

Here are some personal reflections from Nicola. Her time supporting the community at the Beeliar wetlands was partly voluntary, partly community funded.

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One year ago, one of the largest acts of civil disobedience in the history of this continent took place. Many hundreds of people pushed down a fence and walked into urban bushland near Fremantle, Western Australia — on Wadjuk, Noongar country, to reclaim the land that was to be bulldozed out of spite and malice.

This was one of the most significant days in the short and bitterly fought non-violent direct action phase of the campaign to protect the Beeliar wetlands and urban bushland that went from December 2016 to … Read More »



Revealed: community survey on policing of Beeliar

Posted on April 30th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, News, Resources. No Comments

It was just a short question on the Beeliar Community noticeboard … “how do you feel about police” … and it unravelled a huge discussion, and led us to prepare a survey that ended up being filled in by more than 200 people. It captured some of the community attitudes towards police that came out of the protests to stop clearing work in the lead up to the WA state election.

We have been working with the Beeliar Legal Support team and Wetland Defenders on a comprehensive report documenting more than twenty incidences of breaches of police protocol and arguably unlawful use of force, as well as patterns of human rights abuses and a culture of aggressive policing. The report will be launched shortly, however we want to share the survey results with the community first.

There are numerous interesting insights about the diversity … Read More »



Battle for Beeliar

Posted on March 11th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, Case study, Legal, News. No Comments

Today the people in Western Australia will make a judgement whether they want Barnett and his Liberal government to continue. All signs point to no, but people are waiting hearts in mouths -will the result bring what country needs?

The last three months have seen a pitched battle at the Beeliar wetlands, in the south of Perth, near Fremantle… as the Liberal government have gone full force into bulldozing the urban bushland, and wetlands for a contentious road project that is expected to blow the states budget out more than $8 billion. As with the East West link before, and in tandem with the West Connex protests in Sydney, it is the community that has stepped up to say no to another unwanted road project. To delay work, to monitor the fauna management, to do everything in their power to stand … Read More »



Check In… but don’t check out – On Standing Rock

Posted on November 1st, by Counteractive in Campaigns, Case study, News. No Comments

Standing, not clicking with Standing Rock

At the high point yesterday facebook told us that ONE MILLION people were talking about Standing Rock and #NoDAPL … the campaign to stop a gas pipeline and destruction of indigenous homelands.

That is very exciting. Imagine if just 10% of those people took a second, small, but meaningful action? Can you help us support people in Australia to do this? Read on.

First off – there are mixed views on whether the “check in” process is doing much to fulfill its stated purpose – to confuse authorities… You would likely have seen a version of this message:

The Morton County Sherriff’s Department has been using Facebook check-ins to find out who is at Standing Rock in order to target them in attempts to disrupt the prayer camps. So Water Protecters are calling on EVERYONE to check-in at … Read More »



A vision for climate civil resistance

Posted on October 12th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, Case study, Resources. 2 comments

There are many conversations happening in the climate movement at the moment – with increasingly dire news – and likely breaching 2 degrees of warming or more by 2050, and the Paris agreement supposedly coming into effect – we are seeing no signals from government they are taking this seriously – instead we have the Labor Party in Queensland invoking special powers, and favours to hasten the Adani coal mega mines. Ongoing conversations have been given new momentum by the thinking outlined in “This is an Uprising“ which has generated lively debate and meetings around the country.

One of the challenges we have is a lack of imagination of what the future might look like. It is hard to think through what a healthy future and a powerful resistance movement might look like to get us there when we are constrained … Read More »



Unfuck the Planet

Posted on July 24th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, Events, News. No Comments

How do we unfuck the planet?

Well, it’s not entirely an easy question to answer but we went to Splendour in the Grass and tried to have a crack at it along with some of the best activist brains in the country.

Splendour in the Grass turns 16 this year, and the Splendour Forum has become a key part of it over the last seven years with the growing institution of the Splendour Q&A (which Barnaby Joyce woosed out of this year), lots of comedy and nerdy learning.

They have a great tradition of bringing progressive and contentious ideas, and injecting a bit of politics and activism into a festival scene otherwise filled with dancing, drinking and too much plastic.

Our unfucking conversation was wide ranging – hosted by Dr Lindsay McDougall – prolific tweeter, musician and all round champ.

We heard about the biggest … Read More »