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Byron Shire
July 23, 2024

Lockdown lifesaver

Latest News

New coercive control laws explained at Lennox Head tonight

With new coercive control laws coming into effect on July 1, Greens candidate for Richmond, Mandy Nolan will hold community forums – along with other speakers – in Lennox Head and Mullumbimby, during July and August.

Other News

Taking action to preserve forests for the Great Koala National Park

It was pouring rain, and dark, as my 14-year- old son Omar, Frankie our faithful Jack Russell, and I made our way four hours south to the traditional logging town of Taylors Arm, west of Macksville. Taylors Arm was made famous in Slim Dusty’s song, The Pub With No Beer. 

New coercive control laws explained at Lennox Head tonight

With new coercive control laws coming into effect on July 1, Greens candidate for Richmond, Mandy Nolan will hold community forums – along with other speakers – in Lennox Head and Mullumbimby, during July and August.

Byron’s foreshore future – a closer look

Plans for Byron Bay’s foreshore are on exhibition until July 31 – Council staff propose options and a ten-year vision for the much-used space, including the removal, or partial removal of the carpark around the pool and Fishheads restaurant. 

Developer may destroy up to 1.5 million indigenous artefacts in Lismore

Land and Environment Court accepts Uncle Mickey Ryan as party to the case after Lismore Council fails to defend Aboriginal cultural heritage of North Lismore Plateau.

Zionism, antisemitism, Israel

Thank you for the political comment from David Heilpern (July 3) – it was to the point and very...

Dirty laundry

Beacon Laundry’s half-page ad (Echo, July 3) trumpets the promise of ‘clean karma’. This is the same business, a multimillion-dollar...

Warren Kennedy, Mullumbimby

Sorry Peter Olsen I have not changed my mind regarding the appropriateness of lockdowns and other measures in this pandemic, because the evidence doesn’t support your argument.

Data does show there’s been a slight increase in deaths in 2020 over expected mortality but the number of deaths has been above average all year, not just since the start of the pandemic.

Catherine Bennett, the chair in epidemiology at Deakin University, noted that ‘our monthly increase in deaths compared with previous years is constant since January, and consistent with that expected with our annual population growth… and our ageing population.’

According to Professor Bennett, given Victoria’s population growth, the non-covid excess deaths in that state are ‘not a big discrepancy, especially when we do see some variation year to year’.

Yes, some doctors have opposed the lockdown in Victoria, just as some scientists deny anthropogenic climate change. There isn’t unanimity among doctors. But the weight of medical opinion clearly supports lockdowns, restriction of movement, and venue closures where there is active disease in the community.

This is not to deny that some people have been severely affected by lockdowns or that mental health is a concern. Some might even have died owing to what might be called ‘covid depression’ or through neglecting existing conditions; but their number is far fewer than the number of deaths which would have occurred had Australia ‘respected liberty’ like the United States has.

As I write, there have been 897 deaths owing to COVID-19 in Australia. If our death rate per million was as high as America’s by now, over 16,500 Australians would have succumbed to the virus and we’d still be experiencing increasing numbers of infections and deaths. There has not been anything like 15,600 extra non-covid deaths, so overall the measures taken have saved many lives.

Incidentally, if America had responded to the pandemic as well as Australia has their covid death toll would be around 11,800 now instead of almost 218,000.

The UK is experiencing a renewed spike owing to poor social distancing at reopened venues and is preparing for renewed lockdowns, and the Italian government has just mandated universal mask wearing in public because the virus is getting out of hand again. We can’t allow pandemic fatigue to lower our guard.

Is the minor, temporary restriction of our freedoms worth it? Hell yes!


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Zionism, antisemitism, Israel

Thank you for the political comment from David Heilpern (July 3) – it was to the point and very well explained. Comments on 'back to...

Byron and Tweed Councils pursue housing project dreams

Long-held council dreams of new, affordable housing on public land in the Byron and Tweed Shires are closer to being realised, mayors say, with state and federal government support.

Tweed council catching up on DA backlog

Tweed Shire Council staff say they’re catching up on and reducing the number of outstanding development applications [DAs] lodged locally.

King tide flooding in Ballina

King tides in Ballina are expected to cause minor flooding of some local roads this week.