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Local News

Foot-and-Mouth Disease Case Numbers Stabilise in Indonesia

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Foot-and-Mouth Disease

Foot-and-Mouth Disease Case Numbers Stabilise in Indonesia

 

The incidence of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in Indonesia has stabilised, with daily reported cases decreasing from over 12,000 during the peak of the outbreak in mid-2022 to approximately 25 per day currently.

Effective from June 4, 2024, the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry will align biosecurity measures for travellers arriving from Indonesia with those applicable to other countries.

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Deputy Secretary of Biosecurity, Operations and Compliance, Justine Saunders APM, stated that the department has been closely monitoring the FMD situation since the outbreak began in May 2022.

“FMD case numbers in Indonesia have stabilized and are now comparable to the 70 other countries where FMD is present,” said Ms. Saunders.

“Following revised scientific risk assessments, the department will remove some biosecurity measures at the Australian border that have been in place for travellers from Indonesia since mid-2022.

“Travelers arriving from Indonesia will now be subject to the same biosecurity controls as those from any other FMD-affected country.

“While sanitation foot mats will no longer be used for flights arriving from Indonesia, heightened biosecurity measures will remain for all international flights.”

These measures include:

  • Increased use of detector dogs trained to identify biosecurity risks.
  • Enhanced screening with 2D x-ray technology and trials with advanced 3D x-rays.
  • Real-time risk assessments conducted by Australian biosecurity officers.
  • Targeted communication and increased signage to inform travellers.

Ms. Saunders emphasised that managing risks at the Australian border is part of a broader effort to enhance regional biosecurity.

“Australia continues to support our neighbouring countries and key trading partners in addressing animal disease challenges,” Ms. Saunders said.

“The Australian Government’s support for Indonesia’s FMD response included providing 4 million vaccine doses and training over 100 Indonesian quarantine officers through the Biosecurity Training Centre at Charles Sturt University.

“This support has been pivotal in Indonesia’s effective response to FMD and has reinforced our national biosecurity system.

“Thanks to our robust biosecurity protocols, effective management in Indonesia, and the vigilance of incoming traveller’s, Australia remains free from FMD.”

Fast Facts

  • Sanitation foot mats, introduced at international airports in July 2022 and cruise terminals in September 2022, will no longer be used for travellers from Indonesia starting June 4, 2024.
  • Non-compliance with biosecurity requirements can result in penalties, including fines up to $6,260 and visa cancellations.
  • Since 2022, detector dogs have been trained to identify additional FMD risk products, which will continue to be targeted.
  • Ongoing enhanced measures to address global biosecurity risks include:
    • Real-time risk assessments by biosecurity officers, including post-arrival risk indicators and targeted questioning of travellers.
    • Application of biosecurity profiles to identify high-risk traveller’s, mail, and goods.
    • Referral of high-risk passengers and mail for biosecurity screening.
    • Continued screening with 2D x-ray technology and trials with advanced 3D x-rays.
    • Expanded deployment of detector dogs at all major international airports and mail facilities.
    • Targeted communication and engagement to raise awareness of biosecurity risks and import requirements.

The Australian Government has committed over $10 million to support Indonesia’s response to the FMD outbreak.

 

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Local News

The Beauty of the Sugar Industry

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Harwood Sugar Mill Mural

The Beauty of the Sugar Industry

 

A recently completed mural at the entry to the 150-year-old Harwood Sugar Mill is stopping traffic and creating excitement in the little village with the oldest Australian owned sugar mill.

In the lead up to the 150-year celebrations, artist Nitsua, has created an artwork that reflects the blending of the cane growing and milling activities in the Northern Rivers, that exists thanks to the all-Australian partnership between the grower-owned NSW Sugar Milling Cooperative and family-owned Manildra Group.

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The artwork was commissioned by Sunshine Sugar as part of the preparations to celebrate the significant milestone of 150 years continuous manufacturing operation and Australian ownership – all on the same location on the bank of the mighty Clarence River.

As Sunshine Sugar CEO, Mr Chris Connors commented: “Not too many businesses in Australia can say they have achieved such a significant milestone, which is why we are making the effort to celebrate and promote the resilient industry we have here in NSW.”

Sunshine Sugar and the NSW sugar industry have a line-up of community events and activities happening at Harwood (near Yamba) in August. The celebrations with culminate in a massive outdoor community event to be held at the Harwood Cricket Oval on Sunday 25th August.

Find out more at: 150th Harwood Mill Landing Page – Sunshine Sugar

 

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Kyogle News

Services Australia’s Mobile Service Centre “Golden Wattle” to Visit Northern Rivers Region

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Golden Wattle

Services Australia’s Mobile Service Centre “Golden Wattle” to Visit Northern Rivers Region

 

Services Australia’s Mobile Service Centre, Golden Wattle, is set to visit towns in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales, providing easy access to Centrelink, Medicare, National Disability Insurance Scheme, and Department of Veterans’ Affairs services.

Golden Wattle will visit:

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  • Nimbin: Wednesday, 17 July, opposite the neighbourhood centre, Cullen Street (9:30 am to 4:00 pm)
  • Urbenville: Thursday, 18 July, near Captain Cook Park, Urben Street (9:30 am to 3:30 pm)
  • Woodenbong: Friday, 19 July, in front of Woodenbong Hall, Unumgar Street (9:30 am to 4:00 pm)
  • Kyogle: Monday, 22 July and Tuesday, 23 July, in the Kyogle visitor centre car park, Summerland Way (9:00 am to 4:00 pm)
  • Bonalbo: Wednesday, 24 July, in front of Bonalbo Hall, Koreelah Street (9:30 am to 4:00 pm)
  • Tabulam: Thursday, 25 July, opposite the hotel, Court Street (9:30 am to 3:00 pm)

About Mobile Services Centres: Mobile Services Centres are 20-tonne trucks operated by Services Australia staff, providing regional and rural Australians with friendly, face-to-face service and tailored support. On this trip, staff can assist with:

  • Centrelink claims
  • Medicare registrations
  • Accessing online services

Additionally, information about the National Disability Insurance Scheme and Department of Veterans’ Affairs programs and support services will be available.

For more information, visit the Services Australia website.

 

For more local news, click here.

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Lismore News

Saffin Secures $30,000 Grant for Youth Crime Prevention

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Lismore MP Janelle Saffin with North-Tracks Works Chair Patrick Higgins, Secretary/board member Kevin Bell and Mr Bell’s working dog Maezzie. - Youth Crime Prevention

Saffin Secures $30,000 Grant for Youth Crime Prevention

 

Lismore MP Janelle Saffin has successfully secured a $30,000 grant for North-Tracks Works, a Lismore-based organisation dedicated to empowering vulnerable young people. This funding will enable the expansion of their life-changing programs to engage more youth in Goonellabah, Coraki, and Casino.

Ms. Saffin expressed her gratitude to NSW Minister for Police and Counter-terrorism Yasmin Catley for approving the grant following her advocacy on behalf of North-Tracks Works. She praised the organisation, which operates out of a shed in South Lismore, for its impactful work with young people aged 11 to 18, offering one-on-one support, mentoring, and practical learning opportunities.

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“I previously secured a $44,000 Local Small Commitments Allocation grant to help North-Tracks purchase equipment and materials for skill-building,” Ms. Saffin said. “This additional grant will allow North-Tracks to employ youth workers and expand their proven youth program, which is supported by Richmond Police District Commander Superintendent Scott Tanner.”

Patrick Higgins, Chair of North-Tracks Works and a local real estate agent, thanked Ms. Saffin for her efforts in securing the additional funding from Minister Catley. “We don’t fit in the box for normal funding. Our approach is about creating a sense of belonging and purpose through our skills program and training working dogs. It’s the work with the dogs that bridges the gap,” Mr. Higgins explained.

“At North-Tracks, we spend 10 percent looking back, 10 percent at where you are now, and 80 percent looking forward. We help them chase their dreams and goals,” he added. “Our team has three basic goals: keep them safe and alive, keep them out of jail, and help them move forward to live a full and productive life.”

This funding is set to sustain and expand North-Tracks Works’ impactful initiatives, providing more opportunities for at-risk youth to gain essential skills and find a sense of purpose and for Youth Crime Prevention.

 

For more local Lismore news, click here.

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