Children & Family

Apple and Facebook should not commodify pregnancy


Mal Fletcher - On Line Opinion



Apple and Facebook have announced plans to pay for their female employees to freeze their eggs. This, say the tech giants, will boost the performance of women in their employ. The companies seem to be betting that women will devote themselves body-and-soul to the job in the present, knowing that their bosses have helped provide other options for their future.




Drugs & Alcohol

Psychosis fears after 'ice' use rises among injecting drug users


Harriet Alexander - SMH



Hospitals and drug clinics are bracing themselves for more patients presenting with psychosis and cardiovascular problems after a significant increase in use of the drug "ice". The number of injecting drug users who used ice in the last six months has increased from 55 per cent to 61 per cent in the last year, according to the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre's annual survey released on Monday.




Australian country towns in ice epidemic

News Ltd



Children as young as 11 are injecting ice to escape the boredom of country life and the problem is ravaging Australian towns.




Education

Foreign teachers on 457 visas worsen graduate glut


Heath Aston - SMH



Foreign nationals on 457 visas are working in schools and early childhood centres despite a growing glut of unemployed Australian teaching graduates. A leaked audit of the 457 scheme by the Fair Work Ombudsman, obtained by Fairfax Media, suggests that up to 3600 people are working as teachers, mainly in early childhood care.




Gambling

Gamblers get less of a buzz from pleasure, study finds


Mandy Oaklander - Time



New research presented at the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology Congress in Berlin sheds light on what happens in the brains of gamblers. Pathological gambling is a difficult condition to classify.




Homelessness & Poverty

The young and the homeless


Darrin Barnett - ABC



When the music stops, you don't want to be the government when Australians determine that the younger generation won't realise the dream of home ownership, writes Darrin Barnett.




Marriage

Hillsong pastor Brian Houston denies gay marriage support


APN



The Australian leader of the Hillsong megachurch has been forced to clarify his position on gays after being attacked by Christians for supporting homosexuality. Brian Houston was quoted widely in gay and mainstream media reports saying that gays and lesbians should be welcomed in the church.




Is that extravagant wedding hiding a shaky relationship?

Natalie Reilly - Daily Life



Here's some affirming news for anyone who has ever had to stop their eyes from rolling at an ostentatious wedding: a study undertaken last month of over 3,300 heterosexual people in the US has found that marriage duration is inversely associated with spending on the engagement ring and wedding ceremony.





Politics

Tony Abbott wins backing for Vladimir Putin face-off: Newspoll


Phillip Hudson - The Australian



Three out of five Australians are in favour of Tony Abbott confronting Russian President Vladimir Putin over the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 when he visits Australia next month. But despite endorsing the Prime Minister’s tough talk, the latest Newspoll, taken exclusively for The Australian, shows overall support for the ­Coalition has dropped to a three-month low. Labor continues to flatline, the Greens have received a bounce in primary vote, and Bill Shorten has marked his first year as Labor leader with his approval rating dropping to a three-month low and disapproval with him at its highest level.




Refugees

A billion dollars to run offshore detention centres for the past year


Sarah Whyte - The Age



The Abbott government has spent more than a billion dollars this financial year to house about 2100 asylum seekers in offshore detention centres in Papua New Guinea and Nauru, Senate estimates has heard.




Papua New Guinea to rewrite policy for resettling refugees from Manus Island detention centre

Radio Australia



There is likely to be a further hold-up in allowing asylum seekers inside the Manus Island detention centre to be resettled in the Papua New Guinea community.




Religious Freedom & Persecution

UK: Christian school faces closure 'for failing to promote other faiths' despite its academic success


Daily Mail



A successful Christian school could face closure after failing to invite religious leaders from other faiths to speak to pupils, it has been reported.




Iraqi Christian church warns of IS persecution

John Newton and Marcela Szymanski - AINA



With all the focus on the rise of the Islamic State (IS) and related turmoil in the region, one important and tragic story has been left out of the popular narrative: the plight of the Middle East's ancient Christian communities. These once vibrant communities, numbering in the hundreds of thousands, face additional duress as winter approaches.




Other

Abbeys Project

Mamamia Team



Just months before she died, 17 year old Abbey wrote this poem for her father. “I was only a girl hiding under my sheets,” 17-year-old Abbey wrote in a poem addressed to her father. “I’m broken now, torn and ripped in pieces… I fight to repaid the damage/ your breath remains on my chest.” Two months after she wrote those chilling lines, Abbey was dead.