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News and Reviews

Council investigating possible DA Tracker data breach

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Council investigating possible DA Tracker data breach

 

On 24 April, an upgrade to Byron Shire Council’s document management system resulted in some internal development related documents being viewable on the DA Tracker public web portal.

The DA Tracker is Councils online portal that allows users to track the progress of development applications.

“Access to the DA Tracker was temporarily suspended as soon as we became aware of the issue, and the removal of the internal documents from the DA Tracker public web portal was completed on 29 April”. Councils Manager Business Systems and Technology, Colin Baker said.

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“We are currently investigating this incident to determine the exact nature and extent of the documents incorrectly published.” Mr Baker said.

Council takes the privacy of its customers very seriously and has engaged the NSW State Government’s Cyber incident response team to assist with the investigation. If it is determined that a data breach occurred, Council will be contacting any person directly impacted, and following other mandatory reporting requirements.

Customers concerned about this DA Tracker data breach incident can contact Colin Baker, Manager of Business Systems and Technology by calling 02 6626 7347.

 

For more Byron Bay news, click here.

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$3.8 MILLION TO HELP NORTHERN RIVERS COMMUNITY HEAL AFTER 2022 FLOODS

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$3.8 MILLION TO HELP NORTHERN RIVERS COMMUNITY HEAL AFTER 2022 FLOODS

 

RESEARCHERS at Southern Cross University have been awarded more than $3.8 million to help Northern Rivers locals affected by the devastating 2022 floods.

In a world-first approach, the researchers will implement a stepped care model to support over 200 people left with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after the floods.

To date, there have been very few clinical trials focused on recovery from disaster-related PTSD. None have focused on a stepped care model.

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Stepped care is an evidence-based system for treating mental health, involving a hierarchy of treatments, from least to most intensive.

The stepped care treatments in this clinical trial will include an arts-based group compassion program and group-based MDMA-assisted therapy. It is hoped the findings will provide additional treatment options for those impacted by future disasters.

People can register their interest in participating in the clinical trial by emailing compassiontrial@scu.edu.au

The Albanese Government is providing these funds as part of the 2022 Clinical Trials Grant Activity, with funding commencing from March 2024.

Grants totalling $62 million were awarded to 26 recipients as part of the grant opportunity.

The Albanese Government has committed a total of $750 million for the Clinical Trials Activity Initiative over ten years.

Quotes attributable to Federal Minister for Health Mark Butler MP:

“Supporting the mental health of Australians is a key priority for the Albanese Government.

“In a country often ravaged by bushfires, floods and cyclones, the world-first research by Southern Cross University will look for new and innovative ways to help communities recover following natural disasters.

“We hope that this research project will help the Northern Rivers community to recover following the flood tragedy.

“Our Government is proud to support this groundbreaking research through the Medical Research Future Fund.”

Quotes attributable to NSW Parliamentary Secretary for Disaster Recovery and State Member for Lismore Janelle Saffin MP:

“This project not only offers innovative evidence-based practices for trauma relief, but also means something positive can come out of our local experience. This research will add to the body of knowledge around trauma and post-traumatic growth.

“James Bennett-Levy has an international reputation for innovative mental health approaches and a commitment to the wellbeing or rural Australians, particularly the residents of the Northern Rivers Region. That’s why I was happy to throw my support behind this project.”

Quotes attributable to Lead Researcher, Professor James Bennett-Levy, of Southern Cross University:

“I thank the Minister for funding this world-first clinical trial of a stepped care model in a post-disaster context.

“In 2022, northern New South Wales, and Lismore in particular, experienced Australia’s most devastating floods. People are still suffering from disaster-related post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

“Our research after the 2017 floods showed that mental health problems were compounded if people were self-critical and blamed themselves. We have therefore designed a stepped care program with a self-compassion focus. Step 1 will evaluate a five-session arts-based program which engages participants in creating compassion-focussed artworks. If participants still have PTSD, they may be eligible for Step 2, MDMA-assisted therapy. Prior research has shown that MDMA-assisted therapy is an effective evidence-based treatment for PTSD and enhances self-compassion.”

Quotes attributable to Vice-Chancellor and President, Southern Cross University Professor Tyrone Carlin:

“Under Professor Bennett-Levy’s leadership and expertise, this novel trial will broaden our knowledge about the effectiveness of therapeutic treatments for addressing serious trauma following a natural disaster.

“Lismore is the most flood-prone city in Australia. We know that many in the Northern Rivers community remain traumatised by the 2022 back-to-back flood disasters. Lismore is also the birthplace of Southern Cross University, and with our roots deeply embedded in the community it is appropriate we lead this project.

“We congratulate Professor Bennett Levy for being awarded the MRFF grant. It represents the largest block MRFF funding received by Southern Cross University to date and illustrates the excellence and impact of critical research conducted by the University in our region.”

 

For more 2022 floods news, click here.

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Dive into the Latest Northern Rivers Times Edition

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Dive into the Latest Northern Rivers Times Edition

Catch up with the heart of Northern Rivers through in-depth articles and community highlights in our newest issue. Northern Rivers community news.

The Northern Rivers Times is thrilled to announce that our latest edition is available. Find your copy at local newsagents, Woolworths supermarkets, Ampol, and EG service stations, as well as various general and rural stores throughout the region.
This week’s issue is rich with content that touches every corner of local life, from environmental initiatives to exciting community events. Here’s a preview of the engaging stories and reports you can expect:
• Charity in Action: TV Star Lucinda Lights Up Byron Coastal Charity Walk
• Honouring Heroes: Comprehensive Guide to Anzac Day Services Across the Region
• Political Landscape: Ballina Greens Reveal Slate for 2024 Local Elections
• Infrastructure Updates: Progress on Ballina Bridges Duplication Enhances Flood Resilience
• Environmental Concerns: Latest Fish Kill Signals Ongoing River Health Issues
• Green Initiatives: Wollongbar TAFE’s Horticultural Insights
• Community Support: Lifeline’s New Warehouse and Store Opening in Goonellabah
• Environmental Advocacy: Byron Shire’s ‘The Drain is for Rain’ Campaign
• Cultural Celebrations: Casino Beef Week’s Breakfast with the Butchers
• Development News: Casino’s $14 Million Equestrian Centre Unveiled
• Conservation Efforts: Clarence Property Commences Approved Ecological Works
• Safety Measures: New SMS Alert System for Tyalgum Road amidst Ongoing Repairs
• Heroic Rescues: Man Rescued by Marine Volunteers after Brunswick Bar Incident
• Social Issues: Spotlight on Youth Homelessness
Beyond these features, our edition includes a wide range of sections designed to cater to diverse interests within our community, from cooking and gardening to real estate and senior activities. Enjoy puzzles, a detailed TV guide, travel features, and much more.
We are dedicated to keeping you informed and entertained with well-rounded coverage that celebrates and supports our vibrant Northern Rivers community. Pick up your copy of the Northern Rivers Times and stay connected with the stories that matter to you.

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New development planned for Woolgoolga Retirement Village

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New development planned for Woolgoolga Retirement Village

 

Woolgoolga and District Retirement Village Ltd are taking steps to add a collection of modern retirement residences and amenities to their village in High Street. They are in the early phase of planning a new development to be called Callisto Coastal Retirement.

Sasha Andrews, Chief Executive Officer of Woolgoolga and District Retirement Village Ltd is excited about the plans. “We are very proud to be adding Callisto Coastal Retirement to our community.” Ms Andrews said. “We are part of a great community in a fantastic location and aim to set the benchmark for premium retirement living in Woolgoolga.”

At this early stage, they are keen to get input from the local community of future residents to help create the perfect coastal retirement. A Feedback Forum is being offered to eligible potential residents aged 55+, providing an opportunity to learn more, convey their thoughts, ideas and insights around design and services, features, amenities and priorities.

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The new development has the support of the Board of Directors of the not-for-profit, community owned organisation. Chairperson, Ian Wade said “Woolgoolga and District Retirement Village has played an important role in the community for many years and we want to ensure that it continues to meet the needs of our seniors for years to come. We have a great opportunity to provide quality retirement living, built with future residents in mind.”

A community Feedback Forum is planned for Tuesday 7 May. For details and to register to attend, go to the website here. For more on the Woolgoolga Retirement Village, visit here.

 

For more Coffs Harbour news, click here.

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