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In light of Australia’s unprecedented and devastating bushfire season, Jesuit Social Services’ Ecological Justice Hub and Moreland City Council will present a series of thought-provoking discussion forums drawing connections between consumer consumption and its relation to climate change. The first event, Our Wast STUFF, will be held on Thursday 27 February 2020 as part of the Sustainable Living Festival, 6pm – 8.30pm at Brunswick Mechanics Institute, 270 Sydney Road, Brunswick. Buy tickets, here.

Congratulations to our friends and colleagues who were recognised, among hundreds, in the 2020 Australia Day honours: Jocelyn Bignold, CEO of McAuley Community Services for Women and Catholic Social Services Victoria Council member; Dr Anne Astin, another of our Council members; Sr Monica Cavanagh rsj, Congregational Leader of the Sisters of St Joseph and former President of Australian Catholic Religious; and Jesuit Social Services' Paul Stewart.

The Victorian Government must set public targets to reduce the number of young people in detention, on remand and who re-offend after exiting the youth justice system, in light of a new report that shows an almost doubling of spending on youth detention services over the last four years, says Jesuit Social Services. The annual Report on Government Services shows that Victorian Government spending on youth detention services increased by 98 per cent, to a total of $121.9 million, between 2014/15 and 2018/19.

A new whole-of-Church initiative to help people and communities recover from the current bushfire crisis will set the blueprint for how the Catholic Church responds to domestic natural disasters in the future. The new national collaboration is called CERA – Catholic Emergency Relief Australia – and will serve as a coordination point for Catholic agencies responding to natural disasters. The founding organisations are the Australian Catholic Bishops ConferenceCatholic Religious AustraliaCatholic Social Services Australia and the National Catholic Education Commission. Other Catholic organisations are expected to join the collaboration soon.

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