On the back of this 2020 ASIO threat assessment address in Canberra, All Together Now has today called for a greater investment in community-focussed programming on Countering Violent Extremism (CVE). The address by the ASIO Director General Mike Burgess last night highlighted the real and growing threat of rightwing extremism in Australia.
All Together Now is a national charity, based in Sydney, with a primary purpose of educating Australians about racism. However, since 2012, All Together Now has also been running a CVE project in NSW called Community Action for Preventing Extremism (CAPE) which is funded by NSW Government until 30 June this year. The program undermines recruitment processes by training and supporting a network of frontline workers who work with young people at risk of engaging in far-right extremism.
All Together Now Managing Director, Priscilla Brice, said the response to the threat of far-right extremism needed to be multi-pronged, including significant investment in community-focussed CVE programs designed to prevent recruitment by rightwing extremists.
“Security and intelligence measures are an important part of the response, but governments cannot ignore the value of effective community-based CVE programs,” said Brice.
“Working in the community to prevent the recruitment of young people is one of the most effective and cost-effective ways to counter this rising threat of far-right extremism in the long-term.
“Funding for CAPE is uncertain beyond the current financial year but I hope that, in light of the threat assessment from ASIO, all governments strongly consider expanding this type of community-based CVE program,” Brice said.
Earlier this week, 9news.com.au published an article about a Reclaim Australia supporter – Nathan Paterson – who is upset because people are judging him on his looks.
“People judge you just for the way you look, without knowing anything about you, which I think, that’s not fair,” Nathan said.
This is our open letter to Nathan.
We saw your story on 9news. We wanted to let you know that we wholeheartedly agree with your statement.
When people call us names based on how we look, it really hurts. It makes us feel anxious. They don’t really know who we are, so who are they to judge?
When people abuse us based on what we wear, it makes us feel frustrated. Nobody else has the right to tell us what type of clothing is acceptable.
When people ridicule the way we present ourselves – you have been ridiculed about your tattoos so we know you can sympathise with us – when people do this we feel that it is unfair. They talk about us from a distance so we don’t get the right of reply.
Why do people judge others before they get to know them? It doesn’t make sense.
Like you, we want to be defined by what we do and say as individuals, not by how we look.
All Together Now supporters
Exit is an All Together Now project that works to prevent and reduce the recruitment and growth of white power groups active in Australia. Once involved, the cost to an individual can be very high and leaving the white supremacist group can be very difficult. For this reason, early intervention is crucial.
In addition to working directly with young people at risk of joining a white supremacy group, Exit also provides advice to friends, family and community workers who have concerns about a person becoming involved in the movement.
Responding to White Supremacy: A Guide for Frontline Workers was created with the support of the Australian Attorney General’s Department and is suitable for all frontline workers, including youth workers, counsellors, psychologists, social workers and teachers.
It provides information about the white supremacist movement in Australia and strategies for responding to someone who is involved in, r at risk of becoming involved in the white power movement including information on:
If you would like a copy of the guide, please contact us on [email protected].