Aziza Mumin, Bonnie Huang and Kritika Rathore
Week 2, Semester 2, 2021
ACAR community space for people of colour of any level of political education, who also organise left-wing anti-racist activism. We understand these current circumstances are really difficult, and although we will be online, please do not be discouraged to join if you are new, we would be so happy to see you!
We also condemn the Berejiklian Government’s increased use of police scare tactics in LGA’s that have a large migrant demographic—many of whom are people of colour that have war or police-related trauma.
Over the winter break, ACAR has been working on the Asian on the Margins – Stories Campaign in collaboration with the Asian Australian Project. It is a social media campaign that aims to share and uplift the stories of the Asian community in light of the increased incidences of racial discrimination and assault worldwide. To submit your experiences with COVID-related discrimination, or stories of empowerment, please enter through the Google Form.
Following the campaign, we will be hosting an online panel later in the semester to discuss these issues. Make sure to follow the campaign socials @aapxacarstoriescampaign or like our Facebook page to keep updated.
Despite being in lockdown, this semester will still be an exciting one! We will meet weekly to organise or to do reading groups/film screenings as a way to educate ourselves. The group is autonomous, meaning that it is only open to people of colour, but we hold non-autonomous events open for allies as well!
Week 13, Semester 1, 2021
Since our last report, ACAR has been busy with putting together the ACAR’s annual autonomous edition of Honi Soit which was published last week. We highly encourage everyone to read it. Although the ACAR Honi for this year has been published, we will still be putting together Zines this upcoming semester and anyone who wants to contribute is highly encouraged to do so.
ACAR recently attended the coronial inquest for Bailey Mackander (who died in custody) at NSW Coroner’s court. He was treated brutally before his sad demise. While the guards/correctional officers continued to lengthen the court proceedings by claiming penalty privilege, the proceedings were made to go off-record. We will continue to build for the upcoming inquest in July, work with ISJA, and build student contingents for the event in support of the family. Meanwhile we need you to ask “Is Australia post-colonial yet? Because indigenous communities are still dealing with imperial issues.”
Over the winter breaks ACAR will be going to Bankstown poetry slam. We are also planning to hold lunch events at indigenous owned restaurants and compile a list of indigenous owned businesses in order to pay our respects and rents (a brief version of this has also been added to the ACAR Honi).
ACAR has also been working with the AAP (Australia Asia Project) to build a campaign regarding the discriminant behaviours of government and society against Asian communities and international students with Asian origin. This campaign will follow the theme of neglect and advocate for actual ‘inclusion’. We will initially start with a stories campaign next semester and encourage POC with Asian background to join, contribute and tell their story.
We will continue to build and support over the breaks, and continue to hold our regular meetings over the following semester. We encourage any POC to get involved and join the Autonomous Collective Against Racism. Join us through Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, alternatively you can also email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Week 8, Semester 1, 2021
ACAR has been busy and in the process of putting together our annual autonomous edition of ACAR Honi which will be out in Week 12 of this semester. We are still looking for people who want to contribute content which can be art, written pieces, multimedia pieces, or all of the above. Please get in contact with the conveners to learn more about how you can contribute. We look forward to producing an amazing publication, and can’t wait to see what our contributors come up with!
During our cross-collective film screening of ‘In My Blood It Runs’, we handed out our zine that follows the themes of abolition, decolonisation and anti-racism. It was created to serve as a basic guide to what these themes mean and create a platform for communication, knowledge-sharing and dissemination. ACAR is excited to work on more zines throughout the year with fresh content, to create a sense of community-building for our members.
In the meantime, our members have attended the Stop Black Deaths in Custody rally on the 10th of April. There have been more than 440 Indigenous deaths in custody since the royal commission, with 13,000 Indigenous people in prison on any given night – the highest rate of incarceration of any group of people on the planet. This rally marked 30 years since the royal commission made recommendations regarding Aboriginal deaths in custody.
On Friday of Week 7, we had an inter-uni lunch meetup in collaboration with the UTS Ethnocultural Collective in Chinatown. This was organised to discuss anti-Asian racism and rhetoric, and how we could build together — keeping in mind the rising xenophobia and covid-based racism against Asian businesses. We express solidarity with and support Asian businesses, especially those who have been hit hard by the pandemic.
We are also keen to connect with more international students to work towards an anti-racism campaign. We aim to bring more awareness to the increase of racism and discrimination faced by international students due to the pandemic, and avenues available for them to report cases.
We will continue holding regular meetings and events throughout the semester and welcome any person of colour to join us. If you would like to get involved or keep up to date with the collective, you can find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Alternatively, you can get in touch via email at email@example.com
Week 4, Semester 1, 2021
ACAR stands in solidarity with, and send our love to, the grieving families and communities who have been affected by the deaths which have occurred over the last few weeks. There have been three Indigenous deaths in custody and a racially-motivated mass shooting in the United States. It is important to keep in mind systemic racism is closely linked with gender and class, and that these are only the reported instances of racial violence. We must dismantle the settler-colonial state system. We aim to work more closely with ISJA to make sure Indigenous issues are fought for, and to build for greater awareness around COVID-related racism through social media campaigns.
We have had three meetings so far; including a working bee/banner paint for the vigil held for those who have fallen in Myanmar. We hosted a inter-uni picnic with UTS Ethnocultural Collective and UNSW People of Colour Collective on the 19th of March to discuss plans regarding the commencement of more cross-uni collaborating and organising this year.
ACAR is organising a film screening on the 31st of March alongside the Women’s, Welfare, and Environment collective. ‘In My Blood It Runs’ is a documentary about the inheritance of resistance and resilience, it celebrates love and learning. We will be handing out our zine that follows the theme of abolition at the screening. This is in anticipation of April 10th, ASEN event against black deaths in custody.
Planning for our autonomous edition of Honi Soit is underway. We are currently looking for expressions of interests to join our editorial team or make submissions to be published, please get in contact with the convenors to learn more about how you can contribute!
We are keen to welcome any person of colour to engage with the collective who hasn’t yet. We intend to have weekly events moving forward (access will be available to those studying remotely via Zoom), like our Facebook page (Sydney Uni Autonomous Collective Against Racism) and join our Facebook group (ACAR: Autonomous Collective Against Racism) to get involved! We’re excited to see and facilitate the growth of ACAR!