Australia Day award: Peter Kingston rejects honour in protest


Another national hero has rejected his Australia Day honour, joining a growing list of stars joining the protest against tennis star Margaret Court.

Another Aussie legend has rejected his Australia Day honour, joining a growing list of stars joining the protest against tennis star Margaret Court.

Peter Kingston, an artist most famous for his landscapes of Sydney Harbour, announced on Australia Day evening that he will return the Medal of Australia he was awarded in 2012.

Mr Kingston told The Australianhe was “compelled to return this medal because I object so strongly to the honour bestowed upon Margaret Court this year.”

“It makes me sick, the whole thing,” he said. “To inflict this on us, when everyone is having such a hard time, I can’t be a part of it anymore.”

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Court, who has served as a Pentecostal minister since her retirement from tennis, was honoured this year with the highest level an Australian can receive — a Companion of the Order of Australia — but her nomination has been met with controversy.

The award recognises “eminent achievement and merit of the highest degree in service to Australia or humanity at large”.

She has long rejected the LGBTIQ+ community and campaigned against the rights for those community members, describing homosexuality as an “abominable practice”.

She originally received an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2007 and today revealed: “No (I won’t give it back), because I loved representing my nation.

“This was for my tennis and I think it was a long time coming and I’m very honoured … We did nothing but play for our nation.”

Mr Kingston said he believed Court’s elevation stood in opposition to the purpose of the awards.

“In these fragile times where we are all up against a pandemic of anxiety I find Margaret Court’s elevation to the highest order contrary to the premise the awards are given, that is to make our community a better place,” Mr Kingston told The Age.

“I’m returning this award because I believe the elevation of Margaret Court is contrary to the integrity and meaning of the award and her effort in amplifying divisive opinions has not made our community a better place and contradicts the objectives of the award.

“I’m not intending to undermine the efforts and immensely good works of the other people who have been recognised and not denigrate those who have been recognised but to highlight the need of people who have been marginalised by Court’s hurtful, damaging and divisive attitudes to the LGBTIQ + community.

“I couldn’t think of a better use of the award than to stand up to religious bigotry.”

Australian TV veteran Kerry O’Brien backflipped on the honour on Monday night, after previously accepting an appointment as an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO).

He said he changed his mind due to the “deeply insensitive and divisive decision” to award the tennis legend.

The former Four Corners presenter and political correspondent is widely regarded as one of the most important voices in journalism. He was honoured for distinguished service to broadcast media.

“I believe the decision to award Australia’s highest honour to Margaret Court may serve to erode the hard-fought gains made over decades in reducing the impact of discrimination against members of the LGBTIQ+ community,” he wrote.

He said he was also refusing the award “in support” of Dr Clara Tuck Meng Soo, a transgender woman and LGBTIQ advocate who received an Order of Australia medal in 2016 but has now written to the Governor-General to inform him she no longer wants it.

“To me Dr Took Meng Soo epitomises the true spirit of the Order of Australia. Her actions speak volumes as to why the Court award is so wrong,” O’Brien said.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews weighed in last Friday, saying that he does not believe Court is worthy of the award.

“I don’t believe she has views that accord with the vast majority of people across our nation that see people from the LGBTIQ community as equal and deserving of dignity, respect and safety,” he said.

“I don’t believe she shares those views and I don’t believe she should be honoured because of that.”

In total more than 800 Australians have been recognised this year, including 571 recipients of awards in the General Division of the Order of Australia, 28 recipients in the Military Division of the Order of Australia and 176 meritorious awards. You can see the full list here.

Thank you for visiting My Local Pages and reading this news article involving VIC and Australian news published as “Australia Day award: Peter Kingston rejects honour in protest”. This post was presented by MyLocalPages as part of our local and national news services.

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Kingston teenager collects Christmas trees for local food provider: ‘Hopefully we can continue’ – Kingston


The holiday season has almost come and gone, and for many people and that means disposing of their real Christmas tree.

A Kingston teenager will do the heavy lifting for you — for a small fee to support a local charity. Max Emelifeonwu, 19, says he will gladly take your “real tree” off your hands for $10, adding it’s a continuation of a similar project he and his teammates did during their minor hockey days.

Read more:
A couple of Kingston food providers are more than happy to serve up holiday meals

“Two or three years ago for my major midget double A team … we decided that we were going to do a Christmas tree fundraiser,” he said. “And we just thought that, yeah, we should continue it alone as well, just because.

“And hopefully we can continue it for many, many years to come.”

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A couple of Kingston food providers pleased and excited to be helping out over the holidays


A couple of Kingston food providers pleased and excited to be helping out over the holidays

This curbside collection fundraiser will benefit Martha’s Table, a local food provider Emelifeonwu says he’s more than happy to help.

“There are a lot of people in and around our community that won’t get the opportunity sometimes that I myself have,” he said.

“So from there I have always had a sense to (look out) for others.

Read more:
Kingston woman receives a life-changing Christmas gift

The pickup service has come in handy, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Amelie Waldin had her Christmas tree picked up on Tuesday.

“Just happy to help out in any way we can, happy not to do the drive ourselves, trying to keep ourselves safe and away from other people,” Waldin said. “Happy that Max is doing it for us.”

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Martha’s Table is happy as well. Maggie Gallivan is with the organization.

“When Max was given a choice, he chose Martha’s Table to donate the proceeds to,” Gallivan said, “so that’s pretty inspiring that the young community is getting involved in what’s happening in our community.”

To get involved, contact mitchie69@live.com or call 613-572-3613.


Click to play video 'Kingston woman raises $12,000 for charity by sewing COVID-19 masks'







Kingston woman raises $12,000 for charity by sewing COVID-19 masks


Kingston woman raises $12,000 for charity by sewing COVID-19 masks – Dec 14, 2020

 




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Cyclist in hospital after Kingston car collision | The Canberra Times


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A cyclist has been taken to hospital with head injuries after a collision with a car on Monday morning. The incident happened just after 8.30am on Monday on the corner of Wentworth Avenue and Mildura Street in Kingston. The cyclist, a man in his 60s, sustained minor head injuries due to the collision and is in a stable condition. An ACT Emergency Services Agency spokesman said the man was taken to Canberra Hospital as a precaution. The driver of the car was not injured. Police crews remain on the scene of the incident and are investigating the circumstances that led to the collision. Mildura Street remains closed between Leeton Street and Wentworth Avenue. Police have urged drivers to avoid the area.

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KFL&A Public Health warning of ‘toxic’ drugs after increase in overdoses – Kingston


Kingston’s public health unit is warning residents that a “toxic batch of drugs” may be circulating in the Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington area.

This comes after a recent increase in overdoses locally. The public health unit says in some cases, these overdoses have been accompanied by “unusual reactions” to the drugs, like a rapid loss of consciousness, chest pain or stroke, seizures, involuntary movement, and high blood pressure.

Read more:
KFL&A Chief Medical Officer warns four deaths could be linked to cocaine lace with Fentanyl

“Substances being consumed may appear lime green in colour initially and become darker in colour during preparation,” KFL&A Public Health said in a news release.

The health unit is urging people who use drugs not to mix their substances, to test before using, and to never use alone.

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They are also asking users to be mindful of the risks during the COVID-19 pandemic, and to keep social distance or to connect virtually with someone who could call for help if needed.


Click to play video 'Study explores why COVID-19 pandemic led to increase in overdose deaths'







Study explores why COVID-19 pandemic led to increase in overdose deaths


Study explores why COVID-19 pandemic led to increase in overdose deaths

The area’s safe consumption site is now located at the Integrated Care Hub at Artillery Park, which is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The Rapid Access Addictions Medicine Clinic at Street Health Centre is open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 to 4 p.m. by appointment to provide individuals with support related to substance use.




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Kingston South East community pushes to fix a 30-year shortage of childcare places


The Kingston South East community, 300 kilometres south-east of Adelaide, has renewed a push to resolve a shortage of childcare in the coastal town it has endured for more than 30 years.

Kingston Childcare Working Group spokesperson Kirsty Starling said 46 children were currently on the waitlist for early learning and childcare places.

“There might only be somewhere between 10 and 15 places that actually become available [each year],” she said.

According to a survey conducted by the independent group last year, 62 per cent of businesses said employees have had to resign or reduce their hours because of limited or no access to childcare.

Ms Starling said the issue was preventing young families from moving to the region and was restricting the growth of the town.

Kingston South East is famously the home of Larry the Lobster.(ABC South East SA: Bec Whetham)

Ms Starling said she had to take steps to keep her own job as a nurse at the local hospital.

“I don’t think any of my friends living in Adelaide could say that they’ve had parents drive three hours to come and care for their child for a day so you could keep your position at work — which is what my mum used to do for me on a Friday,” she said.

Local state Member for MacKillop Nick McBride said the need for childcare was “quite immense” and the issue was “coming to a crunch”.

A man in a checked shirt leans on a farm gate
MP Nick McBride says fixing the childcare issue will require all levels of government to work together.(Supplied: Nick McBride)

He said improving access to childcare would help more than parents wanting to work.

“There’s also another cohort of children that are perhaps on the slightly disadvantaged side that would be benefited by an early learning centre there to get them ready for school,” Mr McBride said.

Long-term solution needed

The Working Group has decided the only way to expand the town’s childcare service is to build a new facility.

“So we probably need a new build, we need some kind of commitment there, financially, from all levels of government, or in-kind work from the community, so we can move forward.”

Ms Starling said the progress toward a new facility had been “extremely slow and frustrating”.

“We want some support in [order] for us to develop plans, a business plan, and then we can maybe attract some funding,” she said.

South Australian Education Minister John Gardner said he is aware of the current waiting list for childcare and the community’s interest in building a childcare centre.

“The State Government is continuing their commitment to provide childcare at the Kingston Early Learning Centre based on its rural care model while the community explores options that meet their longer-term childcare demands,” Mr Gardner said.

The Federal Member for Barker, Tony Pasin, said the State Government is responsible for infrastructure that supports childcare facilities.

But he said once a shovel-ready proposal was ready, it was the kind of project targeted by the Building Better Regions Fund.

“But it really needs to be, as everyone has been saying, in partnership with the State Government and local community.”



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Kingston police team up with Youth Diversion to try to limit youth contact with police – Kingston


Kingston police and the Youth Diversion program are working together on a new initiative to help youth limit their interactions with the criminal justice system.

This diversion program is meant to support local youth from the ages of 12 to 17, and is a collaborative effort between the Kingston police and Youth Diversion.

Read more:
New charges laid against Kingston youth suspected of terrorism-related activity

In a release from both organizations, Quigley noted that youth have been especially affected by the changes in social service options, and the isolation brought on by the pandemic.

“We do see young people falling through the cracks now, primarily because of COVID-19, people are being shuttered and locked inside, it is taking a toll, so I think we are going to see a lot more incidents of people needing support from our social service sector.”

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Because of changes seen in social service support, Kingston police noted that they have been “last line of support” for youth in distress, often leading to criminal consequences for youth perhaps in need of other types of support. The program is meant to change that.

“We’re trying to treat things with a social lens and not a justice lens,” Shawn Quigley, executive director of Youth Diversion, said.






Youth Diversion program receives a $339k grant to help at risk youth


Youth Diversion program receives a $339k grant to help at risk youth

He says the new program is intended to hold youth local accountable for their actions through a restorative approach, with rehabilitative and reintegration programs that either preempt interactions with police, or interrupt the usual criminal course of action after being charged.

One way of doing that is allowing families the option to report incidents, such as mental health issues, substance use and running away from home, to Youth Diversion through an online tool, rather than calling 911.

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“The really unique thing is the online reporting tool that the Kingston police have put together to help families who call the police for situations that are not criminal in nature,” Quigley said.

The ultimate goal is limiting local youth’s interactions with police. Youth Diversion will be partnering with Kingston police’s Community Oriented Response and Engagement (CORE) unit and working with force’s youth programs officer to implement the intitative.

Data will be collected throughout to be used for analysis on the effectiveness of the program.

The initiative will begin on Sept. 1 and run until March 2021.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.





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Newly reopened Kingston businesses deal with new COVID-19 reality – Kingston


COVID-19 and everything that comes with it has forced almost everyone to deal with their respective challenges differently.

Global News caught up with a couple of newly reopened businesses in Kingston to see how they are faring as the pandemic drags on.

The Kingston Frontenac Public Library has been reopened for about a week now.

“We’ve actually had some great response. People have said, ‘Hey, I’ve missed you’ and some people [are] saying, ‘Welcome back,’” said branch experience director Nicole Charles.

“I think people are really eager to get back into libraries. As a community organization, they miss us.”






First year cadets arrive at Royal Military College in Kingston with covid-19 protocols in place


First year cadets arrive at Royal Military College in Kingston with covid-19 protocols in place

Safety is the top priority as the branches slowly reopen. And Charles said, like most places, protocols are in place.

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“When people come to visit us at the branches here, they are asked to wear masks, [use] hand sanitizer — they’re probably used to that going into retail outlets,” she said.

“We’re asking people to limit their time in the branches, just so we can maintain the capacity limits and make sure we have physical distancing. And our computer sessions are a little bit shorter than what they used to be. They’re 30 minutes now.

Library officials hope to have all branches re-opened by Sept. 8.

Meanwhile, across town at Leisa’s School of Dance, owner/operator Leisa Whalen said it’s so far, so good.

“The class sizes have to be a little bit smaller, and because the classes are spaced out, you can’t have as many classes in a night. There’s going to be a little less that we’re able to offer this year,” Whalen said.

Dancers’ spots are marked out accordingly in both studios so that they can maintain social distancing. And just like the library, safety and well-being comes first.

“[We did] a lot of research into what to buy to disinfect and how to disinfect and how to set up and how to do things a little bit differently.”

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Brockville’s Aquatarium reopens with plenty of covid protocols in place.


Brockville’s Aquatarium reopens with plenty of covid protocols in place.



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Canberra man charged with murdering Warren Hordpenko after fight at Kingston Hotel


A 35-year-old man has been charged with murder, following the death of another man at a pub in Canberra on Sunday.

Warren Hordpenko, 44, died on Sunday night after a fight at the Kingston Hotel.

Police believe Mr Hordpenko, who was from Dalmeny on the NSW South Coast but worked in the ACT, did not know the man who attacked him.

CCTV footage shows a man in a stripy jumper and cap holding a beer outside.
Warren Hordpenko, from Dalmeny in NSW, died after an altercation at the Kingston Hotel.(Supplied: ACT Policing)

“There is no previous relationship that we’re aware of between the two men,” Detective Inspector Matt Reynolds said this morning.

But he said there had been a meeting between the two men earlier that evening at the Kingston Hotel.

“As a result of that incident, the 35-year-old male later returned to the Kingston Hotel where the incident took place,” Detective Reynolds said.

“There has been an autopsy and we have preliminary findings as to the cause of death, however those are still being investigated forensically.”

A uniformed male police officer sits in front of AFP signage.
Detective Inspector Matt Reynolds spoke to the media this morning.(ABC News: Matt Roberts)

Police officers were called to the hotel on Sunday about 9:15pm after reports of a disturbance.

Once there, they found ACT Ambulance Service paramedics already treating the injured man. He passed away at the scene a short time later.

Detective Reynolds said police had already taken statements from many patrons who were in the pub at the time, as well as hotel staff.

He also thanked the public for their help, after ACT Policing released a CCTV image of Mr Hordpenko on Thursday.

“The incident occurred in the pool room [of the Kingston Hotel]. There is no coverage of CCTV in that particular place, however the hotel has numerous other CCTV cameras,” he said.

“Police went through all of the CCTV of the Kingston Hotel and identified the offender.

“We are very appreciative of the public’s help in this matter.”

The 35-year-old man was arrested on Thursday and charged with murder. He is expected to face the ACT Magistrates Court later today.



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Man dies after fight with another patron at Canberra’s Kingston Hotel


A 44-year-old man has died after being involved in a fight with another male patron at the Kingston Hotel in Canberra’s inner south.

Police said the altercation happened on Sunday about 9:15pm while there were up to 30 people inside the hotel at the time.

Detective Acting Superintendent Matt Reynolds said while police suspected alcohol was involved, they were still investigating the circumstances surrounding the death and had not ruled out a one-punch attack.

“There were no weapons involved,” he said.

“To my knowledge there was no glass involved in the incident.

“In terms of the injuries to the male, we’re still going through the process of forensically investigating any injuries to him.”

Staff, paramedics and police provided CPR to the man, but he died at the scene.

Kingston Hotel
Police are still investigating the circumstances leading up to the man’s death inside the Kingston Hotel.(ABC News: Matt Roberts)

Detective Reynolds said it was unknown whether the men knew each other.

“There is no-one in custody at this stage,” he said.

Police are reviewing CCTV footage and speaking to witnesses and hotel staff.

“Obviously that’s a very distressing incident for members of the public and the staff,” Detective Reynolds said.

Anyone who has information and has not already spoken to police is urged to contact them.



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Kingston multi-storey development proposal divides community on traditional suburb’s future


The Kingston Foreshore on the banks of Canberra’s Lake Burley Griffin has been praised by Grand Designs host Kevin McCloud as a great example of “sustainable urban living”.

But the site has not been without its controversies either, with apartment owners warning of the perils of mixed-used living, citing damages, noise levels and smelly waste among the drawbacks.

Now, further back from the lake’s shore, near the Kingston shops, affectionately referred to as “old Kingston”, some residents are concerned a proposed new development could destroy the character of the traditional Canberra suburb.

Developer Geocon wants to build an eight-storey mixed-used building next to the post office on Giles Street.

The building would have 106 residential units, four non-retail commercial units and the proposal includes plans to use a rear car park and laneway to create a walkway for pedestrians.

The Kingston and Barton Residents’ Association said the proposal did not reflect the character of the area.

“We have residents in Howitt Street and Giles Street really concerned with overshadowing and their privacy,” spokeswoman Rebecca Scouller said.

The residents group is calling on the ACT Government to deny approval for the proposed development.

A man stands in front of a post office in the dark.
Kingston resident Sam Graves says the proposed eight-storey mixed-use development would create traffic chaos.(ABC News: Isaac Nowroozi)

Sam Graves, who lives next to the site, said traffic and parking in the area was already a nightmare, and this development would create traffic chaos, both during construction and once the apartments were completed.

“I live around here and street parking is impossible at the best of times.”

‘The more the merrier’

Leeroy Petersen owns the Caribou pub on Green Square and said the area needed a face-lift.

“I think the more people that are living in the area, the more the area survives,” Mr Petersen said.

Not only is he for the Geocon development, he wants many more complexes like it to be built in the area.

“I think the more the merrier,” he said.

A man stands in front of a bar. Ice hockey is being played on a TV in the background.
Mr Petersen says the more people who live nearby, the better the community feel of the suburb.(ABC News: Isaac Nowroozi)

Fellow local business owner Eamon Chen, who runs The Chicken Shop, echoed Mr Petersen’s sentiments.

“More buildings bring in more people and that is good for business,” Mr Chen said.

ACT Government guidelines ‘confusing’: residents

Some residents in the area are confused as to what the height limits actually are.

“The ACT Government system is really confusing when it comes to planning and development,” Ms Scouller said.

That is because different documents give different answers when it comes height limits.

“The masterplan talks about four [storeys], the territory plans talks about two, the precinct code is silent,” she said.

A woman wearing a red beret and red glasses, stands outside the post office at night.
Rebecca Scouller from the residents’ association is concerned the proposal sets a precedent for future development in the suburb.(ABC News: Isaac Nowroozi)

According to the ACT Government, the relevant document for this proposal is the Territory Plan and the Planning and Development Act 2007.

Under that plan, Blocks 13 and 22 Section 22 Kingston have a two-storey limit — six fewer than Geocon’s proposal.

But it is not a rule that is set in stone and the Act allows a taller building to be considered if the buildings are “compatible with the desired character, appropriate to the sale and function of the use, and minimise detrimental impacts, including

overshadowing and excessive scale”.

In a statement to the ABC, Geocon said the proposed development did take the character of its surroundings into account.

“Given its proximity to towers which are 14 storeys, our inclusion of green space and familiar Kingston brick, we feel Geocon’s design will be well received by the majority of local businesses and residents.”

In a statement, Planning Minister Mick Gentleman said no development application had been submitted to the planning and land authority and the authority would only assess the proposal once a development application had been submitted.



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