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Backchat | Podcast

Your alternative to talkback.

Informed and approachable politics and current affairs. We do interviews, discussion, news, lols and longform features with a different guest host each week.

First broadcast live Saturdays at 11am on FBi Radio. Find playlists and feature content here.



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Women's Health and Diverse Hair Care

Studies show women wait longer in emergency rooms, are less likely to receive painkillers, and have our side effects ignored in medical research. Gabrielle Jackson, the Guardian Australia's Associate News Editor, has written extensively on gendered health treatment and shares her own experiences. Despite a lack of training on BIPOC hair, there are over a million First Nations, Torres Strait Island, African and Caribbean Aussies. Chrissy Zemura started a petition to mandate afro-textured hair education in TAFE’s Certificate III course and discusses the importance of inclusive haircare in Australia.

Uni Fee Hikes and Australia's First Trans-Led Legal Service

The Morrison government has proposed uni fee changes that would ramp the costs of arts and humanities by over 100% in some courses. Sophie Johnston, a Commissioner with the National Youth Commission, explains what these changes mean for the next generation of students. The Roberta Perkins Law Project, Australia’s first-ever transgender legal service staffed by trans and gender diverse lawyers, was officially launched in Melbourne. Sam Elkin, a writer, activist, and lawyer at the Roberta Perkins Law Project to tell us what they’re doing there, and how other states can follow suit.

Future of Public Housing and Sustainable Fashion during Refugee Week

With the recession around the corner and unemployment on the rise, affordable housing is more important than ever. Pam Barker, CEO of youth social service Y-Foundations joins us to discuss the importance of affordable housing, particularly for at-risk youth. World Refugee Day is a time to raise awareness and celebrate the contributions made by refugees. Kate Clugston from The Social Outfit tells us how they support Sydney’s refugee community by employing, educating and training refugee women in the fashion industry.

Protests during Covid and Bushfire Twitter Bots

Sydney’s Black Lives Matter protest was authorised by the Supreme Court in the knick of time, despite a campaign from NSW Police to stop it from going ahead on the grounds of public health concerns. Lawyer Sidnie Suh-rang from O'Brien Solicitors worked on both cases before the Supreme Court and shares the reasoning behind these judgements. Hashtags about arson during our last disastrous bushfire season sparked debate about the true cause of this year’s Black Summer. Our reporter Eamonn Snow dug deep on online disinformation and how it can sway the Australian public.

Indigenous Deaths in Custody and Robodebt

The Black Lives Matter protests in America catalysed from the death of unarmed African-American George Floyd by police officers, have led us to reflect on how we treat Indigenous Australians. Joshua Creamer, a Barrister at Law, Waanyi and Kalkadoon man, talks about the high rate of Indigenous deaths in custody. This week, the Government acknowledged their failed robodebt system - a highly flawed, automated crackdown on welfare. Jenny Cao talks about her experiences with being a recipient of robodebt.

National Reconciliation Week 2020

One of the enduring issues faced by Indigenous communities is the forced removal of children from their families. Richard Weston from The Family Matters campaign explains why Indigenous kids are 10 times more likely to be removed than non-Indigenous children. A survey by Reconciliation Australia revealed that while 90% of Australians support reconciliation, less than a third know how to help. Yorta Yorta woman and lecturer at the University of Wollongong, Summer May Finlay explains how non-Indigenous people should engage in Indigenous spaces, and what we need to improve beyond National Reconciliation Week.

The Arts Industry and Future of Drag

The art industry is on high alert after the NSW Government withheld an annual grant from Australia’s biggest multi-arts venue Carriageworks, forcing it to go into voluntary administration. Executive Director of the National Association for the Visual Arts, Esther Anatolitis discusses how COVID-19 has affected the arts industry. Since the pandemic venues have been shut down, meaning drag queens are unable to perform live in person, in front of large crowds until further notice. Drag Artist, Etcetera Etcetera talks about what the drag community is currently doing online and the potential future of drag.

Social Wellbeing After Lockdown

A survey by the ABC has found only one-in-eight Aussies would feel comfortable attending a large event, one-in-five would consider flying on a plane, and only 40% would dine-in at a restaurant. Dr Rachael Murrahee, clinical psychologist and the director of the Kidman Centre joins us to talk about what social wellbeing will look like after lockdown.

COVID-19 Racism and Sustainable Fashion

The coronavirus pandemic has seen racism against Australia’s East Asian community increase in recent months. A survey by the Asian Australian Alliance revealed 178 incidents of coronavirus-related racism in just a two week window. Osmond Chew, a research fellow at social justice and inequality think tank Per Capita, joins us to talk about this spike. Later, the fashion industry is turning on its head—small businesses have closed up shop, global imports have been impacted and yet online shopping has skyrocketed during quarantine. Natalie Shehata, eco-stylist and founder of ethical fashion platform, tommie magazine, joins us to talk about unethical consumerism and the uncertainty for the future of fashion.

COVIDSafe and the Economic Future

The government’s COVIDSafe citizen tracking app launched last week. Naturally there are concerns over privacy, and exactly how it’ll work. Professor Kimberlee Wetherall, specialist in technology law, joins us to discuss exactly what this new app is all about. Later, as the coronavirus continues to hammer the Australian economy, young people are going to bear the brunt of the downturn in the future. Ed Miller, Economic Fairness Campaigns Director at GetUp, joins us to talk to us about the economic cost of the pandemic and how we’re going to be paying for it in the future.

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