What you missed: Week of Oct. 11 round-up

A lot has happened in the world over the past week. Let’s catch up on the major news headlines:


Australian Referendum Failed

Yes23 is an Australian campaign to add a referendum to the constitution to recognize the Aboriginal people and set up a government body to inform the prime minister about Aboriginal issues. To succeed, they would have needed a double majority vote in both the national vote and a majority in four of the six states. The vote did not succeed despite having 40 percent approval. 

While there are many factors to the referendum’s failure, it can mostly be attributed to the campaign’s ambiguity. The plans for the government body were not clearly defined and the wording for the referendum wasn’t specific. In the final week of voting, coverage for the vote was also pushed to the side in favor of coverage on the Palestine-Israel conflict. 


Argentina Wildfire Causing Pandemonium at a Nearby Resort City 

The wildfire in Argentina started just outside the resort city of Villa Carlos Paz. It was allegedly started by a camper who lost control of a campfire while attempting to make an early-morning cup of coffee. The fire led to the evacuation of the town as hundreds of homes and countless livestock were destroyed in the inferno. The local fire department was reinforced by over 1,000 firemen and several fire planes have been sent in an attempt to control the blaze. Córdoba Gov. Juan Schiaretti has urged citizens to evacuate and has begun sending in aid in the form of potable water, mattresses and food.


United Auto Workers Contract Hinges on Pension Plans

The conflict among the United Auto Workers union (UAW) and the Big Three automakers is potentially coming to an end after four weeks of strikes. While it is rumored they are coming to a settlement, it is by no means the end of the strike. 

Most of the demands have been met including a 20-23 percent rise in wages for over 150,000 U.S. workers, as well as reducing the time it takes for temporary employees to become full-time employees, but there are still two demands being debated. The first is the restoration of the pre-2007 pension plans, and the second is covering the two new electric vehicle battery factories under master contracts with UAW. While there have been some concessions made on both sides, it is unclear whether the strikes will end soon. 


Turnpike-Widening Project Could Impact Environment and Communities

The $10.7 billion construction project to widen the extension of the New Jersey Turnpike into Hudson County has been fraught with controversy. Chief among the concerns is the impact on the environment and the effect on local communities. All of these concerns hinge on the Environmental Impact Study done as a response to the concerns. 

Much to the protesters’ dismay, the study has revealed that the 8.1 mile extension to and from the Holland Tunnel will have little impact on the local community and environment. This project also includes replacing the aging bridges over the Newark Bay from exit 14 in Newark to 14A in Bayonne. The cost of replacing the bridges takes up the majority of the budget, estimated to be around $6.2 billion.



Featured photo courtesy of Marco Allasio, Pexels