Daily News Roundup

March 24, 2021



Three quarters of Australians say their ideal work environment is a mix of remote and in-person working, according to a new study.

Another 16 per cent say they’d prefer a wholly virtual workplace where they can contribute from any location.

The study, one of the largest ever studies of the global workforce, was conducted by Australian professional services network PwC with 32,500 participants from 19 countries, including more than 2,000 Australians.

PwC has released the results of the survey today, in a report called Hopes and Fears 2021.

The survey was conducted between January 26 and February 8, and respondents included workers, business owners, contract workers, students, unemployed people looking for work, and those on wage subsidies or who were temporarily laid off.

The countries involved were Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Poland, the United Kingdom, the United States, China, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, India, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and South Africa.

The survey found the pandemic has intensified Australians’ anxiety about the future.

It found 56 per cent of Australians think few people will have stable, long-term employment in the future (defined as a job lasting more than two years).

Nearly one-third (32 per cent) think their job will be obsolete within five years.

Automation is a large concern, with 59 per cent of respondents saying they are worried many jobs were at risk, with 44 per cent feeling uneasy about their own jobs being at risk.

Nearly two-thirds of Australian participants in the survey (61 per cent) felt the government should act to protect jobs, and that feeling was more acute among 18-34 year-olds (63 per cent) than those over 65 (50 per cent).

Workers in the hospitality and leisure industry, one of the hardest hit in the pandemic, felt most strongly about the government’s responsibility to protect jobs (79 per cent).

However, more than half (55 per cent) of Australians still believed technology could improve job prospects, while 17 per cent said it would make no difference, and 28 per cent thought technology would be an impediment.


An appeals  court has rejected a last-ditch bid from jailed mother Kathleen Folbigg to contest her 2003 convictions for killing her four infant children.

The NSW Court of Appeal ruled on Wednesday morning there was an “ample basis” for a recent inquiry to conclude there was no reasonable doubt surrounding Folbigg’s guilt.

The decision comes after 90 scientists and doctors recently petitioned NSW Governor Margaret Beazley to pardon Folbigg based on new medical evidence suggesting her two daughters may have died of natural causes.

Folbigg was convicted in 2003 of murdering her babies Patrick, Sarah and Laura and of the manslaughter of her 19-day-old son Caleb in four separate incidents over a decade, starting in 1989.

She maintains her innocence.

In 2019 Justice Reginald Blanch heard an inquiry into Folbigg’s convictions, considering whether new medical developments pointed to her exoneration.

He concluded the inquiry reinforced her guilt.

But Folbigg asked the Court of Appeal to review Justice Blanch’s findings, saying he had made errors.


American actor and musician George Segal has died, aged 87.

The news was confirmed by the actor’s wife today, who revealed he passed due to complications from bypass surgery.

“The family is devastated to announce that this morning George Segal passed away due to complications from bypass surgery,” Sonia Segal shared in a statement via Deadline.

Segal became popular in the 1960s and 1970s for playing both dramatic and comedic roles. 

Some of his most acclaimed roles are in films such as Ship of Fools (1965), King Rat (1965), Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966), The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre (1967), Where’s Poppa? (1970), The Hot Rock (1972), Blume in Love (1973), A Touch of Class (1973), California Split (1974), For the Boys (1991), and Flirting with Disaster (1996). 

For the past eight years, Segal had been a series regular on ABC’s comedy series The Goldbergs. The last episode of the 1980s family comedy that he filmed before his death, Episode 16 of the show’s current eighth season, is set to air April 7. 

The series is expected to pay tribute to Segal on-air.


A 17-year-old boy has died after being electrocuted at a home north of Brisbane last night, with witnesses claiming to have heard “distressing screams” as the horrific incident unfolded.

It comes after parts of Queensland and NSW faced days of wild weather, including heavy rain and flooding, leading to countless homes and businesses being lost.

Despite the weather now clearing, experts have warned people not to become complacent, with  water levels expected to remain dangerously high through the rest of the week.

Emergency services discovered the dead teenager after being called to a home in Upper Caboolture at about 8pm on Tuesday.

His death is not being treated as suspicious, with the investigation now handed over to Queensland Workplace Health and Safety, according to the Courier Mail.

One witness told the publication they heard “distressing screaming”, while others claimed to have heard a loud bang.


A seven-year-old girl has been killed in her home in Myanmar after security forces opened fire in the second-largest city, Mandalay.

Witnesses said the girl had been shot inside her home when security forces opened fire in a suburb of the city, reports the ABC.

Soldiers shot at her father but hit the girl, who was sitting on his lap, her sister told Myanmar Now media outlet.

The girl is the youngest victim so far in a crackdown against opposition to last month’s military coup.

The army says 164 protesters have been killed in total, but human rights groups say the number is far higher.

Save the Children said at least 20 children had been killed in weeks of unrest following a February 1 military coup.

In a press release the international human rights group said at least 17 children were still held in arbitrary detention, including an 11-year-old girl.

The statement said a 14-year-old boy had also been shot dead in his home on Monday.

The boy’s sister was quoted as saying he was at home in a “squatters’ area”, which was “not strong enough to stop bullets”.

The ruling junta have accused pro-democracy protesters of arson and violence during the weeks of unrest.

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