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The Break Free Project
The Break Free Project is a string of stories just like Tony's. Our aim is to have Tony's story (Pt 1) on 10,000 DVDs and into the hands of every school student across Sydney's West at no cost, raising the awareness and consequences of gangs and drugs. 
And most importantly provide a way of escape...

http://www.pottershouse.com.au/thoang/?page_id=173 Tony Hoang's story is nothing short of inspiring. Hoang was an ex gang member who is now working to raise awareness among youth about the dangers of gangs and drugs, and how to leave that dangerous world. The article shows how isolated children from abusive families can end up joining gangs for acceptance and purpose. It also shows how forgiveness and support can also lead to someone turning their life around.
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Hi everyone,

Check this out! http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/ltrs.index.htm 

This website has valuable information about special education law, education law, and advocacy for children with disabilities.

It has free flyers and resources, too. Wrightslaw is US based, but has some information on letter writing and communication that is priceless for anyone.

If you check the menu on the left hand side of the website, there's links on assistive technology (technology that helps people with disabilities), law, advocacy, ADHD, mediation, juvenile justice and more. You can also discover upcoming seminars and search for topics in alphabetical order (just look at the top left hand side of the website, under the heading "Wrightslaw").  

There's also a section on how to write letters to stand up for and represent children with disabilities here: http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/ltrs.index.htm

Please feel more than free to let me know of any other legal resources for children or people with disabilities! And pass this on! It's more useful if more people know about it. You never know who might need it one day.
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Hi everyone,

Here's a must see article - it's on the abuse and discrimination faced by prison inmates with intellectual disabilities:


Read more... )People with intellectual disabilities face hurdles of intellectual disability, on top of the dilemmas and dangers of being in prison. 

While I believe that people who commit crimes should receive the penalties appropriate for their crimes (whether it's fines, community service, jail), that doesn't mean that their human rights should be ignored. We're all entitled to having our human rights respected, regardless of who we are or what we've done.

Trampling over human rights of others can lead to trampling of more people's human rights (including the rights of innocent people). I think if a society protects the rights of criminals, they're more likely to respect the rights of everyone else.
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Hello everyone,

Here's a website with links to other websites on how to deal with bullying (at a face to face and also wider level):


To eliminate bullying, we need to address it at ALL levels (face to face interactions to wider levels - in policies, laws). Which is why reading this site may help - it shows how people can mobilise and work together to get rid of bullying. This site also has information on how to deal with workplace and school bullying.

Bullying No Way is a superb Aussie resource on bullying. It has information on laws, policies, teaching materials on bullying. Read more here! http://www.bullyingnoway.com.au/

I strongly encourage peple to read Bully Blocking, by Evelyn Fields. This book is a fantastic resource on how to deal with bullies. It shows bullying survivors how to handle bullying, and shows teachers and parents how to fight it. It's also being sold in Australian stores. You can buy it on Amazon here:
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Hello everyone,

We need your help now. Zeynab Jalalian and Hossein Khezri are innocent women awaiting execution in Iran. Their crime? "Enmity against God." Sign this petition here to free these courageous women. Stop the Iranian government from executing them. Tell Ayatollah Sayed to give these women a fair trial according to international law: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/350/488/764

Zeynab and Hossein are both members of the minority Party for Free Life of Kurdistan. The Iranian government is using the phrase "Enmity against God" to persecute peaceful political dissenters. These women should not have to die for peacefully disagreeing with their government.

Thank you if you choose to help.

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Hello everyone,

Please sign this petition to call for an international enquiry into the Israeli army's cowardly attack on the aid flotilla and end the Gaza blockade. It only takes a few seconds:


The Israeli Navy actually used excessive force. Nobody was armed on the flotilla or behaved aggressively. Yet 9 people were brutally slaughtered, and more than 60 people were injured. One female aid worker reported that she had her face smashed against a wall and she was tied up, with a bag over her head. Aid workers are still brave enough to continue trying to deliver aid, despite the brutal treatment of innocents on the aid flotilla.

You can read more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaza_flotilla_raid

From Amnesty website:

Israel's military blockade of Gaza has left more than 1.4 million Palestinian men, women and children trapped in the Gaza Strip. Mass unemployment, extreme poverty and food price rises caused by shortages have left four in five Gazans dependent on humanitarian aid. As a form of collective punishment, Israel's continuing blockade of Gaza is a flagrant violation of international law.

Thank you so much if you do sign. We need to hold Israel accountable for its actions. The people of Palestine should not be left to suffer any longer.

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Hello everyone,

Read this. http://community.livejournal.com/australian_left/211061.html

Five white men verbally abuse and harrass several Aboriginal people, and terrorised them with a gun. Finally, they beat Ryder (an Aboriginal man) to death. They drove off without checking to see if their victim was still alive. Justice Martin failed in his duty to interpret these facts. He concluded that this ‘crime is toward the lower end of the scale of seriousness for crimes of manslaughter’. Not enough violence was inflicted, and the defendants supposedly could not have foreseen a serious risk of death from their violent attack.

Read more... )What can you do about this? You can write a letter or phone Justice Martin about his shameful decision: http://www.supremecourt.nt.gov.au/contact/judges.htm

You can also contact Northern Territory newspapers about this too:

Read more... )
Thank you so much if you choose to help.

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Save GLBT activist from execution

Kiana Firouz is courageous Iranian LGBT activist, film maker and actress. She has spoken out about GLBT rights in Iran, risking her safety and life in doing so. Recently, Kiana has starred in a documentary about lesbians in Iran. She is now at risk of being deported from the UK to Iran to "answer for it". The punishment for homosexuality there is 100 lashes for the first three times. If someone ‘commits homosexual acts’ the 4th time, they are executed by the state.  Sign here to back Kiana and save her life:


Fight for African Americans' rights: say No to Lincoln

Senator Blanche Lincoln played a major role in erasing the public option from the health care bill.2  She also opposed President Obama's plans to help struggling homeowners avoid foreclosure3 and to increase funding for college scholarships.4

The election is likely to be very close. Lincoln's opponent in the primary, Lieutenant Governor Bill Halter, is facing millions of dollars in racially charged attack ads from big business groups that want Lincoln staying in office. We're trying to help Halter fight those ads with small donations from our members.

Can you give $5 or more today to help?


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Petition: Save an innocent man from execution

The following text in italics is from emails by Amnesty and Get Up! organisation:

In April 1991 in St. Louis, Missouri, two young white women plunged from a bridge into the Mississippi River. Three African American youths, who may well be innocent, are paying for the crime - all sentenced to death. One man has been executed, one had his sentence reduced to life imprisonment and the third, Reggie Clemons, sits on death row right now, at risk of execution.

The case against Reggie is one with no physical evidence, two highly questionable witnesses - both of whom were initially charged with the crime - and a trail of alleged police coercion, misconduct from lawyers on both sides of the case, and racial inequities so sharp that a growing number of human and civil rights supporters, including actor, Danny Glover2, are taking notice and calling for immediate justice.



Read more... )
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Hello everyone,

Please sing the petition below to end the monstrous practice of military hazing in Russia. Countless men have died because of this hazing. And more will continue to die unless we do something. The ones who don't are forced to become tormentors of new recruits. The hazing involves brutal humiliation, and lethal beatings. Soldiers have been forced to spend time in freezing temperatures without clothing. One man was killed as a result of this. All this hazing does is create abusers and slaughter people pointlessly. We can't let this go on. 

Sign here:


Feel free to learn more by reading the email below:

End Military Hazing in Russia

Target: Russian President Dmitry Medvedev
Sponsored by:

In Russia, it is estimated that nearly 4,000 new army recruits commit suicide or die each year due to military hazing practices known as dedovshchina ("rule of the grandfathers"). These recruits are virtual slaves to their superiors and are subject to humiliation and severe beatings. The next year, those who survive continue the vicious cycle of dangerous hazing.

The Russian government deals with hazing incidents on a case-by-case basis and responds often when it's too late.

TAKE ACTION: Tell President Dmitry Medvedev that the government must implement a plan to eradicate military hazing.

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Hello everyone,

Innocent women bystanders and peaceful protesters peacefully protesting in San Salvador, Atenco have been beaten and raped by police officers.  Four years have vanished... but the police who committed this atrocity still haven't been brought to justice. This is an outrage.

What's frightening is that these police officers still walk free - so they can still assault and attack people. Many of the women arrested at Atenco were given trumped up charges of crimes such as ''blocking public roads.'' They even served prison time. The last woman was released in 2008. These innocent women are being punished while their tormentors walk free. This is just obscene.

Amnesty has made huge differences in saving lives and pressuring governments to hold criminals accountable. They're not funded by governments at all. This enables them to be politically neutral.  Political neutrality gives them the strength to defend human rights as best as they can. They depend on donations from ordinary people. You can make a difference by donating. And you can also apply for jobs and volunteer for Amnesty to uphold human rights. We can't do anything  much by ourselves, but we can achieve great things together.

You can donate to Amnesty here, to help them protect these women. Help bring their attackers to justice:


Feel free to read the email below for more information:

Read more... )
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Hi there! You may find these links handy if you're a young Scot (a person aged under 26 in Scotland):

Your rights and the law - what you can do at what age:

http://www.youngscot.org/channels/law/?ss=131&s=46&sr=68&ID=22089 The Young Scots website also has plenty of helpful information if you're stuck and need advice on many issues (including education, moving out, getting a job, money, your legal rights, safety, health, sexuality). On the top right hand side of the website (under the words What's Happening) is a box saying"Choose Town". Click on this and scroll down to the town you live in for more advice on what you can do.

Housing and homelessness: http://www.youngscot.org/channels/housing/


Get advice on what to do and who to contact) if you are the victim of crime, and the offender is a young person: http://www.crimeandyou.net/c_o12_help.cfm

Dumfries and Galloway Police website: http://www.dumfriesandgalloway.police.uk/
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Ways to combat police brutality (with examples of police brutality against African Americans)


A disturbing Facebook post on examples of police brutality against African Americans:


From article "The Connection Between Blacks As Apes And Police Brutality"


In one study, participants who were made to think about apes were more likely to support police violence against black (but not white) criminal suspects. The association actually caused them to endorse anti-black violence. Most disturbing of all, however, was a study of media coverage and the death penalty. Looking at a sample of death-eligible cases in Philadelphia from 1979 to 1999, the more that media coverage used ape-like metaphors to describe a murder trial (i.e. “urban jungle,” “aping the suspects behavior,” etc.) the more likely black suspects, but not white suspects were to be put to death.

Not surprisingly, black suspects were much more likely to be described in ape-like terms. And they were more frequently executed by the state.

Subconscious mental connection between blacks, apes may reinforce subtle discrimination


Read more... )
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[Error: unknown template qotd]-L from Death Note. He's got a brain the size of the universe, he's brave, and (almost) nobody can pull the wool over his eyes. Plus - we could share sweets!

-Hercule Poirot, the private detective from Agatha Christie's crime novels. The man's a pure genius. Love the way he fiddles with things to tidy them up. The way he fusses over his moustache - so funny and cute! And I find his comments on the 'little grey cells' LOLarious, for some reason. 

-The Teen Power Inc gang from Emily Rodda's Teen Power series. I get the feeling they'd be fun to hang out with. Plus I could swap art tips with Tom and ramble on about writing with Liz Free.


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