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

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the fossil free resistance

Posted on July 23rd, by Counteractive in Events, News. No Comments

We are out of time

A right wing government and unpredictable Senate with power held by racist and climate denying extremists has just been confirmed for Australia.

We are in the last few years of what was called the “critical decade” for our climate.

The minerals council has welcomed the “trifecta” of government cabinet appointments with open arms and have been positively giddy online, practically flirting with Senator Canavan, and falling over themselves to welcome the combined portfolio of energy and environment.

APPEA Chief Executive Dr Malcolm Roberts said: “The Holy Grail of policy is integrated environment and energy policies, which can deliver lower emissions and affordable energy security.

“Combining environment and energy into a single portfolio is a bold move that should be supported by everyone seeking sound long-term policy.  Environmental policy is often energy policy and vice versa. (continued in media release)

My friends, … Read More »



They want to stop us training

Posted on May 4th, by Counteractive in News. No Comments

Today the report into the tax deductible status of environment groups was released, and has been thoroughly rejected as anti democratic by the environment movement. Whilst there are significant issues raised with a range of recommendations the government is clearly intending to stifle dissent with this:

The Committee recommends that administrative sanctions be introduced for environmental deductible gift recipients that encourage, support, promote, or endorse illegal or unlawful activity undertaken by employees, members, or volunteers of the organisation or by others without formal connections to the organisation.

We were one of the organisations to be specifically cited and one of the recommendations is clearly directed at limited our training work.

Payment of penalties or court-ordered fines in relation to the above should also be captured. Similarly, supporting (financially or otherwise), training in, or promoting the above should be captured.

“At a time when … Read More »



Something rotten in NSW

Posted on April 15th, by Counteractive in Legal, News, Resources. No Comments

There is something rotten in the state of NSW. The strength and speed of the changes to basic civil liberties has picked up pace again with yet more changes afoot as Premier Mike Baird rides roughshod over long held legal principles and basic human rights.

Clearly NSW legislators have learned from the experiences of other states as community campaigns have galvanized opposition to draconian laws. Victoria pushed back effectively on the summary offences “move on laws”, with the Andrews government repealing these laws as their first act of government. In Tasmania they were amended after vocal opposition and are currently being challenged in the High Court, and in WA they are still languishing on the list of legislation yet to be brought forward for debate.

But in NSW the recent Inclosed Lands, Crimes and Law Enforcement Legislation Amendment (Interference) Bill 2016 was … Read More »



Getting in the way – to #LetThemStay

Posted on February 12th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, Case study, Events, News, Resources. No Comments

Our round up of resources, groups and training to get involved in, pathways to action and suggestions for affinity group organising to get in the way, to ‪#‎LetThemStay‬ 

It is an incredible time right now with significant movement momentum gathering around the call to #LetThemStay in relation to the 267 refugees at risk of being deported to Nauru and Manus Island after a recent high court case was unsuccessful in challenging offshore detention.

The response across Australia has been phenomenal – from all sectors of civil society, calling on a need for a moral response, rather than a legal one. Civil disobedience and non-cooperation has hit the mainstream with churches offering sanctuary, and other institutions such as trade hall, and individuals joining that offer as well. Teachers and healthcare workers have been speaking out in recent months, refusing to discharge children who … Read More »



Eight resolutions for the climate movement

Posted on January 1st, by Counteractive in Campaigns, News. 2 comments

OK, so firstly we should clarify – what even is the climate movement?

This is a tricky question in itself. There is what it is, and what some think it is, and what it could be.

Broadly, it could be concerned citizens who care about the impacts of climate change on the earth and its inhabitants, and are doing something about it.

For many, it has been siloed too long as a greenie concern, when it is (and needs to be) so much more than that.

It could, and should be a movement of movements.

That dialogue is finally moving and the fabric of different movements is being woven together.

The reason Flood the System resources resonated with many in the grassroots of climate activism in Australia was simply because it was actually talking about climate in the way it should be.

A symptom of a diseased … Read More »



Flood the System

Posted on December 11th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, News. 4 comments

As the Paris talks wind to a close, with the expected depressingly weak outcomes seeming likely, people across Australia stepped up in a massive day of coordinated nonviolent direct action, to show the government and corporations that where they fail to act, the people will lead.

The day kicked off with actions at Newcastle, Port Kembla and Brisbane. In Brisbane one man in a tree-sit tied off to a rail line disrupted coal transport for more than five hours.

And the action we supported in the centre of Melbourne’s wealthy business district brought Collins Street to a halt for nearly four hours – causing traffic gridlock, as two teams of activists chained themselves to “connect the dots” and blockade the front entrances of both BHP Billiton and Westpac Bank – two examples of our broken system.

Between these two sites, a web of … Read More »



The peoples parliament

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

On Wednesday 2nd February the largest climate civil disobedience in Australia’s history occurred in Federal Parliament. People from all walks of life came together for a powerful gathering holding our elected leaders to account.

Led by traditional custodians, pacific islanders and communities impacted by living on the frontlines of climate change, over 250 gathered in Canberra for several days preparation, action, and learning. As we occupied Parliament House the staff got quite the surprise as hundreds of people commenced their own Peoples Parliament – hearing from those with most to lose (and most to learn from) from climate change.

The well organised event saw more than 200 people dragged from Parliament simply for speaking their mind in the foyer. No arrests were made.

You can check the Peoples Parliament website and still send messages of support, and read others here. Some of the … Read More »



Fierce, radical love

Posted on November 22nd, by Counteractive in Case study, Events, News. No Comments

This week I have been thinking about radical love.

A friend asked me this week – what did the word radicalised mean to me? She asked me this before 129 people were killed in Paris. Before 43 people were killed in Beirut. I was mindful even before then about the baggage that comes with this term, but it’s something I think is vital to our experiences as activists. Because we need more people to be radicalised in the right way.

We are radicalised when we start to have a sense of our own power.

Both when we see things we love taken from us, and when we realise we can fight for them and win.

In the last few years I have been focusing on training activists. Amongst many other skills, to take nonviolent direct action. I believe deeply in the power of people … Read More »



Harvesting resistance

Posted on November 8th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, Events, News. No Comments

On the first weekend of November 2015 a significant event took place on a farm near the small town of Breeza, NSW. More than 500 people gathered for the Liverpool Plains Harvest Festival– travelling from as far away as Melbourne and Airlie Beach – to learn more, and build resistance to the proposed Shenhua coal mine.

The project has been highly controversial and the resistance diverse. The support for the local farmers and inspiring female leaders of the Liverpool Plains Youth crosses party political divides – the event was attended by Greens MPs, ex member Tony Windsor, and Jacque Lambe.

With the black soil of the Liverpool plains being among the most fertile in the country, a growing chorus of people from across Australia have raised urgent concerns with our food bowl being trashed for a foreign owned company to dig up … Read More »



Melbourne vs #Borderfarce

Posted on August 28th, by Counteractive in Campaigns, Events, News. No Comments

It seemed like a good idea at the time. To someone. Somewhere.

Apparently?

When the approval figures are down and there aren’t any 8-10 rated flag announcements then why not get a national security scare, and deploy “Border Force” to check visa’s (that everyone carries on them at all times) and possibly throw in a bit of casual racial profiling in… downtown Melbourne?

“The original announcement quoted ABF regional commander for Victoria and Tasmania Don Smith as saying officers would be positioned at various locations around the city and would speak “with any individual we cross paths with”. (ABC)

Except Melbourne was having none of it.

As social media recoiled, nauseated at the historic overtones of “checking your papers“, a range of groups and individuals scrambled quickly – the word went out to gather at 2pm at Flinders Street Station where a media conference was … Read More »