NSW State Government and protection of Israeli businesses

June 22, 2011 Agencies
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State Labor MP Walt Secord has asked a series of formal Questions on Notice in the NSW Parliament to the NSW Police Minister about protection and security arrangements for Israeli-affiliated companies based in NSW.

Walt Secord

This follows a June 11 protest at a Max Brenner chocolate cafe in Sydney which resulted in two arrests.

Organisers of the protest claimed to be acting as part of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel.  The NSW Public Order and Riot Squad had to be called to attend to the matter.

“With the BDS gaining support, the NSW Government and the Police Minister must ensure that companies with an Israeli connection are protected and are not unfairly targeted,” Mr Secord said.

“The BDS is part of a worldwide attempt to isolate Israel, to boycott Israeli products, creativity, programs and culture. It has reached Australia and that is of concern.

“I vehemently oppose the BDS campaign.”

Max Brenner has 11 branches – 10 in Sydney and one in Newcastle – in NSW. All shops are company owned as they do not have a franchise in Australia. They are owned by Strauss Group, Israel’s second largest food and beverage company.

Mr Secord said that the State Government had the responsibility to protect staff and patrons from harm during protests.

“The NSW Government has a responsibility to protect staff and people who are drinking coffee or hot chocolate on a weekend morning in a cafe from violent protestors,” Mr Secord said.

“As a matter of principle, members of the community who support Israel and oppose the BDS should consider visiting a Max Brenner outlet in the coming days and make a purchase as an act of solidarity and defiance against the BDS,”

Under the Parliament’s Standing Orders, the Minister has until July 25 to lodge a formal response with the Legislative Council.

(Mr Secord is a member of the NSW Legislative Council and was appointed to the chamber earlier this month.)

On Monday June 20, in the NSW Legislative Council, Mr Secord lodged the following question:

POLICE AND EMERGENCY SERVICES—BOYCOTT, DIVESTMENT AND SANCTIONS PROTESTS—Mr Secord to ask the Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Minister for the Hunter, and Vice-President of the Executive Council—

(1) What measures is the Government taking to protect workers and patrons affected by recent Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) protests on companies connected to Israel, particularly the 11 June 2011 protest outside the Max Brenner Chocolate cafe?

(2) What measures is the Government taking to protect the eleven Sydney and one Newcastle Max Brenner outlets owned by the Strauss Group, Israel’s second largest food and beverage company?

(3) What was the status of the two arrests made at the 11 June 2011 protest?

(4) Does the Government have a comprehensive plan to respond to similar BDS associated protests in relation to companies connected or associated with Israel?




2 Responses to “NSW State Government and protection of Israeli businesses”
  1. Violet Mae says:

    Yes Let us boycott the boycotts.
    Buy Israeli products wherever you find them.
    Nip these ignorant wrongly informed gangsters whenever and wherever we can.
    Australia needs to be and remain free of all this garbage.
    we must not go down the same road as the rest of the world-Let us dare to be different.
    I have officially joined BIG

  2. Otto Waldmann says:

    At long last, we have in Walt a curageous, articulate voice in Parliament !
    It took him just about a few minutes,once installed in the bear pit to do what a great – and I DO mean it – bloke like him was always expected.

    I promiss if I run into him again I will no longer say:

    – sorry I run into you Walt, but I didn’t notice you !
    – when I grow (!) up I want to be like you, less 200 pounds !

    Jokes aside, next time I see him… a big hug !

    Actually Walt is absolutely right.It has occured to me some time ago to address our community, asking everybody to buy Israeli goods each time they go to a supermarket where Israeli goods are available. Coles, etc. in Bondi Junction, for instance have a wide range of foodstuff made in Israel.
    We should buy EACH TIME we do our shopping at least one product. From pickles to biscuits. True they might be a bit dearer than other brands, but so is Israel to us, so much dearer that any other place ! This is the most effective way to fight back the BDS !!!!
    Let’s start a movement and call it BIG ( Buy Israeli Goods ) !!!
    I,for one , have been doing it for some time now. It feels good when you pick up the stuff off the shelf, then when you pay, knowing that my money is going to my family in Eretz Israel but feels best of all when you make it part of your food, your sustenance,both your body, but mainly, your soul, the neshama that keeps us and our larger mishpuha strong and alive ! It does taste like Israel itself, like Gan Eden !!

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