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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 22 August 2015
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 22 AUGUST 2015 9 NEWS Commissioner Kapalos welcomes new Aussies Victorian citizenship ceremony embraces diversity In her first official function as Victoria's multicultural commissioner, Helen Kapalos attended a colourful citizenship ceremony at Richmond Town Hall on Thursday, welcoming 63 prospective new Australians from 29 countries. Hosted by City of Yarra mayor Phillip Vlahogiannis, the event promoted the Victorian government's recently launched Embrace Diversity social media campaign. In her speech, Ms Kapalos said: "In Victoria, our diversity is our greatest strength and a way of life. "We come from all corners of the globe, speak more than 260 languages and dialects, and follow more than 130 faiths." The chair of Victoria's Multicultural Commission called on Australians to "ensure that everyone feels part of the one community. No matter who we are, we all have the right to belong." During an emotional presentation Ms Kapalos reflected on attending her first citizenship ceremony as a 10-year-old. "The two people I was there to watch receive their citizenship papers were waiting anxiously and proudly, and I felt their acute sense of belonging when the ceremony took place. Those two people were my mum and dad." The commissioner went on to describe the profound effect of her parents receiving their certificate. "I never realised the burden they carried with them, of not feeling they belonged. It was only in that moment that Australia truly became home and a sense of pride and integrity about their path was restored. "Both of them had left behind mothers they never saw again, but both of them willingly and heartbreakingly embarked on the journey, recognising it would create a life for their children they could never have hoped to achieve." Mayor Vlahogiannis said he was delighted to join the Victorian government's Embrace Diversity initiative, which was launched at the AFL's multicultural round. "This campaign aims to engage people across Australia to not only embrace diversity but to celebrate it." The Embrace Diversity campaign encourages people to show their support by 'joining the conversation' on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, where they can post, share and like comments and photographs tagged #EmbraceDiversity. SA time shift to hit rural communities Putting the clocks forward might make sense for big business, but for some South Australians, daylight savings come at a cost NELLY SKOUFATOGLOU The South Australian government is considering shifting the state's time to either the Eastern or Western Standard Time zone. Premier Jay Weatherill explained that the state favours a shift to Eastern Standard Time, as two reports outlining the costs and benefits predict the change could generate $2.5 billion for South Australia’s economy. According to the state government, sitting in a time zone half an hour behind the eastern seaboard, with the majority of Australia's business activity located in the east, has disadvantaged South Australia. Moving clocks half an hour forward, however, could have a huge detrimental impact on some South Australians. Residents of Ceduna, in the north-west corner of Eyre Peninsula, start their activities in complete darkness and end their day while the sun is still up. "People here in Ceduna have always complained about daylight savings for the fact that it is still dark when kids wake up to get to school," says Kathy Kouvaris. "It's more difficult, sometimes even dangerous, for the families out on farms." Local residents are worried about their children having to walk to school in the dark, as well as school bus drivers reporting several animal sightings whilst driving. "It's hard for people to remain productive, as the working hours are not following their biological clock," says Kouvaris. "What you hear about adults and students falling asleep at their desks is. People doze off behind the wheel, they're exhausted. "Our working conditions would be directly affected by the time zone change." Dr Siobhan Banks, a senior researcher for the University of South Australia, is in favour of the move. "While there would be challenges, residents' body clocks are expected to adjust to the Ceduna resident Kathy Kouvaris. changes, as they do with daylight savings or jet lag," she says. "It wouldn't necessarily af- fect sleep patterns in the sense that people would go to bed and have to get up at the same time, but what would happen is the environment around them would change." Meanwhile, economics professor Matthew Gibson, whose research has exam- ined wage and productivity differences across the four US time zones, says the path of the sun across the expanse of a large time zone "has severe implications" for residents' body clocks. "Researchers call this 'entrainment', by which they mean the time a worker goes to sleep responds more strongly to solar cues than to social cues," he said. Petro Georgiou receives migration award Ex-MP criticises ‘unacceptable’ asylum seeker policy Former Liberal politician Petro Georgiou was honoured with a lifetime achievement award for his influence on multiculturalism at the 2015 Migration and Settlement Awards this week. Mr Georgiou served as the Embracing diversity: Victorian Multicultural Commissioner Helen Kapalos with new Australian citizens Alex and Linda (from Ireland and the UK) and their two-day-old baby Archie, alongside City of Yarra Mayor Phillip Vlahogiannis. PHOTO: BERNIE PHELAN. federal member for Kooyong, in Melbourne's east, from 1994 until his retirement in 2010, when he was succeeded by current Assistant Treasurer Josh Frydenberg. In accepting the achievement, Georgiou was highly critical of Australia's handling of asylum seekers. "What we now have is a legacy of over 1,500 people who have come under our protection, detained for years on Manus Island and Nauru with no end in sight. Our treatment of these women and children is, I believe, wrong. And I believe that an increasing number of Australians, once they appreciate what is happening, will regard it as unacceptable," he said. Prime Minister Tony Abbott acknowledged the positive impact winners and nominees had on migration at the Awards - held at Parliament House in Canberra. "These awards acknowledge the hard work and the dedication of those who are helping the newest members of our Petro Georgiou retired from politics at the 2010 federal election. PHOTO: AAP IMAGE/ALAN PORRITT. team to become the fullest of participants." Others to have been acknowledged for their services and impact on migra- tion and multiculturalism were the ACT Women's Legal Centre, the AFL and the Islamic Women's Association of Queensland.
15 August 2015
29 August 2015