Altay Hagraber, Kedar Maddali, Virginia Meng and Anie Kandya
Week 5, Semester 2, 2020
Since the beginning of semester, ACAR has been busy and in the process of putting together our annual autonomous edition of ACAR Honi which will be out in Week 6. In the meantime, our members have been supporting the essential campaign against University staff and course cuts and fee hikes on campus.
We will be holding regular meetings throughout the semester. If you would like to get involved or keep up to date with the collective, you can find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Week 2, Semester 2, 2020
Since our last report, ACAR has been increasingly involved in aiding the organisation of Indigenous-led Bla(c)k Lives Matter actions, the most successful of which was a vigil and rally in memory of David Dungay Jr. and George Floyd, held on June 6th. The action was reported to have garnered thousands of attendees, despite some pushback from NSW Police. We managed to ensure that social distancing and public health protocol was met adequately to aid COVID safety, whilst protesting for an extremely important cause.
ACAR is planning for the campaigns that we will be focusing on as a collective this semester. This includes continuing the tradition of helping put together USyd’s annual Radical Education Week, as well as continuing to organise closely with local community organisations around ongoing issues, particularly those relating to Indigenous activism. Additionally, ACAR has been continually fundraising for community causes.
As of right now, ACAR is in the process of putting together our annual autonomous edition of Honi Soit, so make sure to keep an eye out for ACAR Honi which will be launching in week 6!
ACAR will be meeting regularly throughout Semester 2. If you are interested in anti-racist activism and identify as Indigenous and/or a person of colour, feel free to join us or keep up with our work by following us on Facebook (fb.com/usydacar) and Instagram (@usydacar)!
Week 7, Semester 1, 2020
Over the last few weeks, the escalating crisis has resulted in a shift to online activism for ACAR as we continue our work off-campus in supporting marginalised students and communities. We have been at the helm of helping set up several mutual aid groups for different areas of the South-West and the Greater Western Sydney regions, assisting in any way we can to combat the crisis. In addition, we have also created a fundraiser for the Refugee Advice & Casework Service (RACS) to assist them in funding telephone interpreters so they can provide legal aid for refugees who have been largely neglected during this crisis. It is in times like this we must stay strong and stand in solidarity with our community’s most vulnerable citizens. To keep up-to-date with our collective, you can follow us on our Facebook page, Twitter, and Instagram.
Week 4, Semester 1, 2020
The Autonomous Collective Against Racism has had a very busy first few weeks since we kicked off the semester. We recently attended the coronial inquest for Eric Whittaker, a 35-year-old Kamilaroi man who was killed in custody. Although the findings concluded that he was treated in a negligent manner, the inquest produced little to no productive results for Eric’s family and there was no justice to be found. Throughout the course of this year, we will continue working with ISJA to make sure Indigenous issues are fought for.
Alongside the other Collectives, we helped raise almost $750 to go towards Indigenous families impacted by black deaths in custody through a bake sale. If you would like to contribute to the cause, a Facebook fundraiser is still running (almost reaching its goal of $2000), and can be found on any of the Collective’s pages.
Simultaneously, we have been organising a rally in solidarity with Muslims in India as they face increasing violence from Modi’s fascist regime. Held in front of the Indian Consulate in Sydney on Sunday, March 15th, we hope that our message of solidarity will reach those in India, especially after the recent riots in Delhi. The riots consisted of Hindu communal mob violence against Muslims which saw fifty dead, and hundreds injured. They were a result of the ongoing developments as part of the Modi regime’s to turn India into a Hindu ethnonationalist state.
If you would like to keep up to date or get in touch, you can find us on our Facebook page, Twitter, and Instagram.
Week 2, Semester 1, 2020
The Autonomous Collective Against Racism (ACAR) is an autonomous anti-racist collective that organises primarily around anti-colonialism and anti-imperialism on and off-campus. Being autonomous, we are open to students who identify as ‘people of colour’, Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander, and/or feel marked or marginalised by white supremacy.
ACAR has had a busy 2019/2020, kicking off our term by helping with the anti-NRC/CAA protest that took place on the 29th of December at Martin Place. We coordinated with multiple activist Indian diaspora organisations to protest the harmful citizenship laws proposed by the Modi regime that would effectively target Indian Muslim nationals and strip them of their citizenship making them prone to deportation.
ACAR has also been actively involved in anti-Sinophobia campaigns both on and off-campus by organising around counter-acting harmful Sinophobic narratives and helping to build a speak-out outside the Sydney Immigration Centre as well as being involved in coordinating and organising a rally on campus during Welcome Week. We plan on continuing these campaigns in support of both domestic and international students and the Chinese communities affected.
With the other collectives, we have organised student contingents to rallies such as Invasion Day, Justice for Walker and standing in solidarity with Indigenous families and communities such as the families of TJ Hickey and David Dungay who continue to seek justice for the murders of their sons by the colonial system. As the ethnocultural officers, we remain committed to the fight for indigenous justice which continues to be at the forefront of our activism. We aim to continue this work in the year ahead and plan to work more closely with Indigenous-led organisations such as the Indigenous Social Justice Association (ISJA).
We have had a successful Welcome Week with almost a hundred new sign-ups, and we look forward to an exciting and fruitful year ahead!
Students' Representative Council, University of Sydney