The arts. My family. Our history.

Aboriginal actor, Madeleine Madden, shares her personal story of growing up indigenous in 21st century Australia.

I grew up in a very political and creative family. I’ve always been surrounded by the indigenous art scene, which has definitely shaped me as a person. The only indigenous person I can remember seeing on mainstream television that was aimed at my age demographic was Deb Mailman on Play School. And the only other place I saw diversity was on the US Disney Channel. It was the only channel I felt I was represented on. That’s So Raven was one of my favourites, the black female protagonist was whom I felt I could identify with. 

I have always been inspired by the people who have worked tirelessly to better the Indigenous community.

I’ve always been taught to voice my opinion and express myself creatively. Growing up in a family involved in the arts, creatives have always been in my life. I look up to the people that fight for our rights and tell our stories, whether it be by showcasing their work in the National Gallery of Victoria, working in parliament or helping out on the streets amongst the community.

On both my mother and father’s side, we are a very strong family. Without their support I wouldn’t be in the position I am in today. Unfortunately that is not the case for every indigenous family. A major reason for this remains The Stolen Generations, which continues to have a huge impact on the Aboriginal community. (Editor’s note – The Stolen Generations, also known as Stolen Children, were the children of Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent who were removed from their families by Australian Federal and State government agencies and church missions, under acts of parliament, between 1905-1969.) Our sense of family, community and the importance of storytelling are extremely important in our culture. The Stolen Generations stripped so many people of their confidence and tore them away from their families and communities, which still affects the indigenous people of this country very deeply. 

Generation One

I’ve always said that having an opinion is important, as it defines who you are. Particularly in the arts; you have the freedom to express yourself and communicate your views on the world. I’m a very passionate person, which can be good and bad. For me, I could only work in the arts. I’m able to channel everything I’m feeling or have experienced, good and bad, into art and make it positive. Which brings me to Generation One – a national movement launched by former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in 2010, which focused on ending the disparity between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians within one generation.

Living in a country where indigenous people have been downtrodden, isolated and rejected from society since colonisation, social issues like crime, substance abuse, mental illness and suicide have become an epidemic across the indigenous community. Being able to voice these concerns and issues in a positive, creative or political way is important. 

It was paramount for me as a young indigenous woman living in this country, dealing with racism and inequality, to communicate these matters. It’s important that we as the younger generation, not just indigenous people, but all Australians, come together and discuss these issues and ways to tackle inequality and injustices in this country. 

Ready For This

I had two job offers early last year, one of them I knew would give my career momentum and the other was Ready For is - the Australian teen-oriented television drama series. I had to choose due to the overlap of shooting schedules, but I knew that Ready For is would be a milestone in my career.

I knew that being a part of Australia’s first all indigenous children’s television program was necessary for children, especially indigenous, to see the community represented in mainstream Australian television. 

Ready For This has since become an acclaimed show, taking out the AACTA Award for ‘Best Children’s Television Series’ and the Logie Award for ‘Most Outstanding Children’s Program’, and also nominated for a 2016 International Emmy Award. It’s a show for people of all ages and ethnicities and has been received really well and is respected on a wide spectrum. I still feel Australia has a long way to go in terms of representing diversity in mainstream media, but shows like RFT are paving the way.

TO READ MORE, PURCHASE A COPY OF DRAFT MAGAZINE, ISSUE 1: THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT - AVAILABLE NOW. 

Words by Madeleine Madden.

Artwork by Noni Cragg.

The Kids Are Alright

A photo series by Magnolia Minton Sparke.

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Section 44

Section 44’s biggest scalp yet has thrown the Turnbull government into chaos, but the Prime Minister’s response to the saga reeks of desperation. Section 44 is a clause in the Australian Constitution prohibiting those under the influence of a foreign power from holding office. In light of revelations surrounding Barnaby Joyce’s dual citizenship, Turnbull and his ministers have pivoted straight into conspiracy mode, alleging collusion between the Australian and New Zealand Labor parties. The significance of a potential ouster of Joyce from his New England electorate cannot be overstated, which lends the government’s response a sort of cornered animal ferocity. Unfortunately, their punches have not landed, and have incited almost as much pity as they have disappointment.

Turnbull’s torrid recent run has illuminated just how tenuous his hold on power is, and the prospect of losing his deputy Prime Minister and his one seat majority in the lower house has necessitated significant changes. However, alleging international conspiracy to topple the Liberal government is not only the height of hubris, but also political foolishness.

 Led by Foreign Minister Julie Bishop’s accusations of trans-Tasman Labor treachery, the Liberal offensive has aimed to discredit Labor in the interim between now and the High Court’s ruling on Barnaby Joyce’s ministerial eligibility. In doing so, however, the government has revealed their own inadequacies and set a dangerous precedent for Australian politics moving forward.

With three federal politicians previously forced to resign due to their unwitting possession of dual citizenship; Joyce’s case is not ground-breaking. What is unique about this instance, however, is that the government has taken no responsibility for this situation. In reality, it is the deputy Prime Minister and the government’s fault for this oversight, and it is they who have thrown into doubt their slim majority in the house, not Labor. That Turnbull and Bishop have the gall to accuse Labor of treason amidst a scandal of their own unwitting making is plainly desperate. Rather than securing their position until Joyce’s future is cleared up, this tactic has merely revealed to the opposition and the public how truly damaged the government is. After a calendar year which has seen the failings of the NBN, Cory Bernardi’s defection, George Christensen crossing the floor, Tony Abott’s overt dissension and now the universally panned plebiscite, the Turnbull government’s hold on power has never been weaker. That is the root of this desperate accusation. The government feels so threatened by the prospect of losing their slender majority – on top of public opinion – that they feel compelled to thrash out at all justified opposition; unfortunately for Turnbull, it was a gravely miscalculated move.

As damaging to the government’s credibility as these accusations of trans-Tasman collusions are, the damage done to Australian-New Zealand relations is potentially graver. In her scathing attacks against both Labor parties, Bishop censured the conduct of the New Zealand Labor party and alleged that leader Jacinda Adern sought to influence the Australian parliament to the benefit of Bill Shorten. Bishop also asserted that should New Zealand Labor win government, she would find it difficult to work with them. Such harshly worded statements are hardly appropriate for a close ally, least of all one with so much shared history and so many common goals. What renders Bishop’s attacks even more ridiculous is her claim that she would find cooperation with a New Zealand Labor government difficult in her role as foreign minister, despite her ability to find common ground with representatives from nations like Iran and the Philippines. Clearly the New Zealand Labor party’s role in some far-flung conspiracy against her party is a bigger disqualifier than any of the injustices of the Khamenei or Duterte regimes. Bishop’s credibility, not to mention Australian-NZ relations have taken a big hit.

Desperate attempts to stave off a big political defeat rarely succeed, but few seem as futile as the one perpetrated by the government last week. Damaging to both their own reputations and relations with New Zealand, the accusations of Labor collusion bear the hallmarks of recent Liberal self-inflicted wounds. Time will tell if the government can recover from the potential scalp of Barnaby Joyce by Section 44, but lobbing wild allegations and threats across the Tasman likely isn’t the best way to proceed.  

Dante Boffa is currently studying a Bachelor of Communication (Public Relations) at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT). He begun writing at an early age, and has an interest in current affairs and classic literature, his influences are varied and ever expanding. For more, follow Dante on Instagram.

Cub Sport

Following their angelic rendition of Kanye West’s ‘Ultralight Beam’ on Triple J’s Like A Version, Brisbane locals Cub Sport, have proved themselves to be musically capable of just about anything. Matea Jozic caught up with Tim Nelson, lead singer and snapchat enthusiast, to discuss a potential career in orthodontics, Kayne West himself, and working with the up and coming Aussie rapper Mallrat.

Aside from wanting to 'milk air time' on Triple J, why did you all collectively choose to play Ultralight Beam by Kanye West on Like a Version?

Kanye is one of our favourite artists and Ultralight Beam is one of our favourite songs, so we were super keen to cover it and share our interpretation of such a spectacular song.

You have a lot of fans who consider you to be their favourite band - what/who was your favourite band when you were younger?

I was obsessed with Aqua. When people asked me what I wanted to do when I grew up I’d say I wanted to be in a band like Aqua, so I guess they’re sort of responsible for the formation of Cub Sport.

Do you have a dream venue or festival that you'd like to play, that hold specific memories?

A huge festival like Coachella or Glastonbury would be amazing! I’d be happy to even attend to be honest.

Breaking into the music industry is probably one of the hardest things to do; what motivates you to keep on pursuing what you love?

We really enjoy it and we love being around each other, so that helps a lot!

We’ve got some seriously amazing fans who motivate us too; knowing that what we’re doing means something to other people is hugely encouraging and gets us even more excited to keep doing what we’re doing. 

There are quite a few pictures of your guys with your dogs Evie and Missy on Snapchat and Instagram, tell us a bit about them.

They’re Golden Retriever x Poodles and they’re amazing. They’ve got really different personalities but they’re both incredibly cute, sweet and funny. I’m obsessed with them. 

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What's it been like going on tour with bands such as Ball Park Music, Loon Lake and The 1975? Have you developed any ideas for your own tour or future music whilst being with other bands? 

Touring with the 1975 taught me that I really want to get to a stage where we have a chef as part of our rider. 

So we've heard you're working with Mallrat. What has it been like?

True! It’s been cool! We spent an afternoon working on a song together, then we stopped recording so Bolan could give Grace a tattoo. Grace’s lyrics are really fresh and amazing! I’m super excited to see everything she achieves in the coming years. 

If you could describe your music as a colour, which one would you pick?

I'd describe is Is Our Vice as a soft pink, that’s why we pressed it on pink vinyls!

Do you have any visual artists that inspire you?

A visual artist who I find really inspiring is Neil Krug, his work is really beautiful and dynamic.

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Oscar Wilde is listed as your only influence on your Triple J Unearthed profile, how does he inspire you all musically?

I didn’t even write that in. I had Kanye as an influence and someone told us that was too ‘done’ and we should change it to Oscar Wilde so I was like ‘yep cool, okay done.’ I’ve been asked about it a few times now, I should probably change it

̄\_(ツ)_/ ̄ I’m not that impressionable these days by the way. 

What do the next 12 months look like for Cub Sport?

We’ve got our Spring tour happening through October-November and we’re currently figuring out a time to record the next album!

For Tim & Sam - so, if music doesn't take you to where you want to go, do you guys think you'll go back to working at Tim's dad's orthodontic practice?

We still work there at the moment; I’d say we’ll probably keep working there until we can’t anymore. In the mean time, those retainers aren’t gonna make themselves!

To read more, purchase a copy of DRAFT Magazine, Issue 1: The Kids Are Alright - Available Now. 

For more from Cub Sport, check out their debut album ‘ is Is Our Vice’ available on Apple Music or Spotify.

Website. Facebook. Instagram.

Matea Jozic is currently studying Digital Media at Australian Catholic University (ACU). She basically lives and breathes music, having attended over twenty gigs in the last twelve months and would love to work in the music industry some time in the future. For more, follow her on Instagram.

Start of Something New - Playlist #1

Here at DRAFT HQ we've been heavily focused on new beginnings. 2016, for most of us, marked the end of our schooling journey, and the start of our tertiary education adventure. It marked the transition from teenager into adulthood. It marked the end of our blogging careers, and the beginning of DRAFT. And so, what better way to celebrate these new beginnings than through everyone's ultimate jam - 'Start of Something New' *collective cheers* bc who doesn't love Troyella/Zanessa???.

We're also fairly flexible here at DRAFT - if you're a tight-arse and don't wanna pay for Spotify; no judgement, power to you. Have a play of that YouTube playlist (you're welcome).

Matea Jozic, DRAFT's Music Editor, is currently studying Digital Media at Australia Catholic University (ACU). She basically lives and breathes music, having attended over twenty gigs in the last twelve months and would love to work in the music industry some time in the future. For more, follow Matea on Instagram.

A Numbers Game

Gabrielle Keegan shares an intimate portrait of a very personal choice facing Australia's youth. 

The store was at a level of near silence, broken only by dulled friendly chatter between a select few early morning shoppers and the humming of upbeat pop music playing distantly on the radio. It was a mild midweek morning and I anticipated that the speed of the day would not progress further than this gentle lull.

If I’d answered just one question differently, then this day would have passed by unnoticed; marked off my calendar and forgotten like so many others. As an idle conversation with my co-worker bounced from one topic to the next, she asked me if I’d ever had sex. 

I said yes. Which would have been a perfectly acceptable way to handle the question had this statement not been a lie.

I was gently pressed for details. ‘Fine’ was my word of choice to illuminate the experience. ‘Yes,’ my response to the question of had it only happened once.

With each word she spoke I prayed that the interrogation would soon end and I wouldn’t be dealt a blow that would send my story tumbling to the ground. I was treading water and barely remaining afloat.

Fortunately, it didn’t take long for my co-worker to gain wind of my frosty responses as she eased her way out of the conversation. I was unsure as to whether her retreat was due to gaining a sense of my lies or if she just thought the topic made me uncomfortable. My fingers were firmly crossed for the latter.

For the rest of the day my stomach churned. A sickening swirl of guilt and regret continued to rise until the emotions clustered in a lump in my throat. My eyes watered, recalling the way the words had leapt from my mouth and escaped from my lips, in a way that felt as though I had not given consent.

Origins of the concept of virginity are difficult to pinpoint, mainly attributed to the fact that there has never been a consistent interpretation of the word. However, virginity has long been seen as a measure of female worth, with women taught the importance of saving themselves and valuing their ‘purity.’

Tracing time back to the Middle Ages, virginity was used as a measure of paternity. As the head of a house- hold, a man needed to be sure that the women under his control were not having sex with anyone outside of his knowledge. us, virginity became a sought after commodity. For centuries, women were deemed worthy of marriage only if they were a product that matched this description. 

At least I wasn’t being publicly sat over a steaming barrel, inspected for smoke on my breath to determine whether I was a virgin based on the premise that the smoke had a clear path through my body.

I could be, within a Tongan culture, required to abstain from sexual activity until marriage. After the consummation, I would be obligated to present the sheets from the experience to my mother. e blood on these sheets a physical manifestation of her honour and duty as a parent, an emblem of navigating through life in the correct way, led by her guidance.

I could be located in a South East Asian country, having my virginity viewed as a business asset used to bargain with other families. My family may seek favour with another and use a virgin bride as their tool of persuasion. My sexual status a feature of property about to be traded.

I was facing a different set of circumstances. Indeed, a set far less extreme. But a conundrum nonetheless. 

I was playing a numbers game. With virginity not holding the same value that it once did, I didn’t want to be considered behind my time. But too many sexual partners? Well, I didn’t want that either.

The gender roles of days gone by loiter within the modern consciousness. Consistently and subtly reinforced through agents of socialisation such as education, family, peer groups and, perhaps most prevalently in modern day society, through the mass media. These constant customs and cues both create and maintain normative expectations.

These roles have long been ingrained within our society, and while stereotyping provides great assistance in allowing the human mind to process information, there comes a time for these archetypes to be questioned, criticised and rejected.

Later, I sat with a friend over coffee and with my mind still askew from my previous actions, I cautiously directed the conversation away from our usual material. We spoke of the pressure associated with losing your virginity, the emotional baggage of labels and the double standards that separate males and females in the domain of sexual activity. 

He shifted slightly in his seat, explaining the expectations from male friends upon returning from a recent overseas trip. Questions of ‘converting’ and ‘sealing the deal’ reminiscent of the ‘boys club’ culture he experienced at an all male school with undertones of competitiveness detached from emotion.

A numbers game of a different kind.

What took me by surprise was that he too had lied about sexual experience. But perhaps this shouldn’t have come as a shock.

Recent studies of student populations demonstrated the majority of participants had lied about their sexual activities. Females who were not linked to a lie detector reported having fewer sexual partners, being older when they lost their virginity and engaging in fewer one-night stands, as compared to those who were having their responses monitored. On the other side of the coin, males who were not linked to the lie detector reported having more sexual partners, being younger when they lost their virginity and engaging in more one-night stands as compared to their lie detector counterparts. 

This is clear evidence of the fear that exists within our generation. The fear that our sexual history may not align with societal expectation, creating an inherent link between sexual status and self worth.

With social movements such as the sexual revolution and the rise of feminism, perceptions of sexuality have shifted and continue to evolve. However, while our society remains a world away from smoking barrels, we still feel constrained by the stigma of sexual experience. A certain portion of our identity remains wrapped up in a number.

I’d never truly realised the significance I was placing on my experience, or lack thereof. I’d never realised I was allowing a construct to dictate the way I viewed myself.

With all the things my mind and body are capable of, why was I boiling my worth down to one singular act? It isn’t a game and the numbers don’t matter. 

For more, purchase a copy of DRAFT Magazine, DRAFT 1: The Kids Are Alright - Available Now.

Words: Gabrielle Keegan

Artwork: Montana Kitching

Men + Makeup =

Welcome to the 21st century - an era in which we are encouraged to embrace our true selves, challenge tradition and tear down social norms. Welcome to an era where, believe it or not, men are wearing makeup

This growing trend of males sporting a full face has become wide spread, inevitably sparking controversy one way but earning a ‘hurrah’ of support the other. This concept, however, isn’t necessarily “new” and should by no means be labeled a “trend”. This so-called fad should be a charging leap into more positive changes in our society and global community.

It would be ignorant to assume that we aren’t moving forward in terms of societal values and expectations. We’re collectively beginning to accept that we don’t necessarily have to continue abiding by standards from the old times, and instead create a world that is more accepting and advanced. Major steps forward have only really begun to show themselves in the last century or so. In most societies today, women can show their legs, women can vote, ‘coloured people’ by law are no longer segregated, and more and more countries are allowing the LGBTQI+ community to get married. In the span of about 100 years the world has opened its eyes that little bit more and recognised the cry for change. It is our reality now - any out dated mindsets just don’t work in this modern day and age; including one-dimensional ideas about gender roles.

The seeds of gender roles have been planted so intricately into everyone’s minds, it’s no wonder there is hesitance to accept males wearing makeup, when there are still people walking the earth who wholeheartedly believe a woman’s place is still in the home. The same people who would sooner drop dead than accept that there was a time where in fact blue was the “colour” for girls and pink was for boys. Grab your pitchforks folks, how dare they say my girl could have been wearing blue! The concept of men wearing makeup can be dated back to around 4000BC. King Tut strutted his stuff daily with a winged kohl liner and rogue lip stain. And if you are in dire need of a more modern example well, the 1980’s onwards have been a momentous era for drastic transformations of stereotypes. The likes of David Bowie and Boy George have rewritten the artistic world entirely, and how about your favourite manly-man movie stars packing on more foundation in a day than your sister ever will. Yes, you heard correctly, Tom Hardy and The Rock glow majestically from sunrise to sunset.

Typically when this topic is brought up in conversation, most minds automatically visualise faces flaunting a Bretman Rock (@bretmanrock) or Manny MUA (@Mannymua733) inspired look however, though in cases this may be true, the reality of it is that some men just want to be comfortable wearing a little concealer on a bad face day. It’s a common argument: “girls have it way easier, you have makeup, if a guy’s ugly then he’s done for.” Imagine if we lived in a world that did not uphold such a negative outlook but instead boosted the morale of each other. It’s all in the name of everyone’s favourite word - feminism. Feminism is all about the equality of the sexes, not the superiority of one, so why not support men who want to radiate a humble confidence? The very fact that men have admitted to being embarrassed to ask for advice on what colour suits their skin tone, or that once they gain a little confidence the only tutorials they find are for female or drag queen audiences says a lot in itself. It has been so very rarely considered that men want to feel good about themselves. Thanks to beauty bloggers such as Jake-Jamie Ward has become significantly easier for male audiences to seek tips for their own basic makeup routines. He believes “makeup is genderless - just a very powerful tool that can generate confidence”. This is a very important message categorising makeup as it should be and extending its audience to be for all. It is a way of expression, a form of art if you will. We should be celebrating anybody who actively strives to accept who they are.

Slowly but surely we are transitioning into a world that endeavours to live as peacefully as our hopes for the future. There are already bursts of change I see in my own community and the wider world. I have male friends who have casually asked us girls to do their face for them, they have no issue in wearing a bit of powder and pigment. After all, that is all it is right? Accepting men wearing makeup is just another step in society beginning to knock down stereotypes; same as realising that clothes don’t realistically need a gender assigned to them. Although progress is being made, media platforms and cosmetic companies enjoy hopping on the bandwagon of movements like this but have a tiresome tendency to promote the wrong thing entirely. Instead of marketing towards anyone who wears lipstick by featuring people of all genders, they create makeup ‘for men’ or now apparently ‘gender fluid’ makeup which continues to reinforce the division between consumers. Perhaps this is a small step that acknowledges those who feel more comfortable not buying from the ‘women’s section’ despite the inclusive advertising, or perhaps it really is just an ignorant attempt to be #relatable.

We have to begin teaching people that everyone is allowed to be who they are. If a young child questions it because of what they’re conditioned to believe, you explain truthfully how that guy wearing bright lipstick and fancy eye shadow is allowed to look like that. If you hear criticism coming from a blind mouth, you plant your feet firm and you educate them. You should strive to stand with someone who is only trying to be colourful in this monochromatic world.

Storks Don't Bring Babies

I remember watching Dumbo as a child and seeing the big white birds deliver baby tigers, zebras and giraffes to their mothers in the zoo. I was naïve and had a wild imagination, which prompted the response from my mum, ‘No Davina, storks don’t bring babies’

The stark contrast between storks in Disney movies and the reality of maternal deaths is shocking. We tend to simplify the idea of mothers and babies but the real world is not black and white and is certainly not a Disney film. With maternal deaths still being prevalent across the globe, we focus our attention on Africa where 57 percent of maternal deaths occur. This crisis of maternal healthcare in Africa is taking a toll, making recent efforts by The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (also known as UN Women), government officials and other non-profit organisations, a topic worth your attention.

Imagine peeking into the newborn unit at a hospital in a country like Canada or Australia. Babies are wrapped in pink and blue blankets lying safe and sound in their glass beds. Maybe one of them will grow up to be a renowned journalist, speaking for those who don’t have a voice. One could work for the World Health Organisation, researching a cure for a disease, and another could become president someday. Meanwhile across the world, pregnant African women face on-going adversity due to poverty, malnutrition and violence. According to UNICEF, in 2015, an African child is five hundred times more likely to die in the first day of their life than at one month of age due to the failures of the African health care system.

According to the World Health Organisation’s 2015 Global Health Observatory data, 550 maternal deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa every single day. This lack of resources has resulted in a lack of adequate health care, and poor prevention of HIV transmission. According to UN Women in 2013, more than fifty percent of women still deliver without the help of doctors or nurses seeing many women die due to haemorrhage, infection, hypertensive disorders, unsafe abortions and a lack of skilled birth attendants and comprehensive emergency care. The worst part is that for every woman who dies from childbirth, twenty more suffer from untreated injuries and disabilities. This results in women suffering lifelong pain and social and economic exclusion due to their inability to contribute during their pregnancy.

This singular crisis appears to be the product of all others. It stems from flawed government systems which facilitates gender inequality, outbreaks like the recent Zika and Ebola viruses, cycles of poverty and a lack of access to clean drinking water. The root of the problem is much deeper in which gender inequality is the main cause of women not receiving the proper healthcare. Experts stressed the importance of gender equality in reducing maternal mortality as part of the Africa Union Commission’s Annual Status Report on Maternal Newborn and Child Health in Africa in 2013. Gender inequality has a direct impact on a woman’s health, and her health is her right. Women’s social and economic statuses often make them unable to protect themselves and make empowered, independent decisions. A leading cause of the crisis is the high rate of underage pregnancies which leads to girls being forced out of school with no proper education, female mutilation, child marriages, violent relationships and cycles of poverty. The list goes on and on. Every day, thousands of women die. Maternal and newborn child health is vital to social, human and economic development on the continent.

The solution is coming.

We are here today because we are committed to supporting you to have a brighter future. For without you, Africa has no future
— 
Ms. Mlambo Ngcuka, the UN Women Executive Director

Ngcuka urges young girls and mothers to stay in school; get an education and try to break the cycle of poverty. The success of the project to restore the hospital in Sierra Leone's Kenema is vital for other maternal and child health centres in Guinea, Liberia and many other countries. UN Women will work to advance women’s well being and health by working alongside governments to re- build health services, end child marriages and meet women’s needs during humanitarian crises. Many organisations are launching initiatives to strengthen reproductive healthcare services between hospitals and communities, to give proper information and education to women. I believe it is essential that women speak out, bring awareness and help each other because this creates a network of information. As we move forward, if we commit to ensuring women receive full human rights - their health will flourish, as will communities and nations. 

Meet the Team: Dante Boffa

You’re a Senior Writer at DRAFT! What does that mean and what do you do?

As Senior Writer, I read and edit all written submissions. From there I’ll provide feedback to Summer and the writers about their pieces, and we’ll decide if we want to include the piece in the magazine!

Where were you before this?

I was in my first year of a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations at RMIT

What did you go to school for?

I am studying Public Relations with the intention of progressing into speech writing or editing, and PR gives me a great understanding of the pressures, motivations and goals that influence people and organisations.

How did you get started at DRAFT?

I met Darcey at uni and once I learned that she was starting DRAFT with Summer I was keen to write for them! I wrote a piece and did some editing for DRAFT One, but now have a more formal, permanent role.

Favourite part of your job?

Being able to write and read about today’s most pressing issues through the eyes of some really talented writers.

Least favourite part of your job?

Having to decide which pieces to include!

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I would love to be a political speech writer, but I’d also love to work in the book industry in an editorial capacity.

What’s one piece of advice you can offer to someone who wants a job like yours?

Put your writing out there as early as you can, always seek advice and critique from others and read as widely as you can.

Tell me something weird about you.

My favourite smell is the inside of an old book…

Dante Boffa is currently studying a Bachelor of Communication (Public Relations) at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT). He begun writing at an early age, and has an interest in current affairs and classic literature, his influences are varied and ever expanding. For more, follow Dante on Instagram @d.oonts

Meet the Team: Darcey Ward

Here at DRAFT HQ, we're almost at the half way mark for issue one and thought it was important while we're busy working away behind the scenes that we introduce you to the people behind every issue. Every fortnight, I, Darcey Ward, will be bringing you an interview with a member of the [D]RAFT family.

In the style of Man Repellers ‘Get to Know Team MR’ series we will be picking the brains of the guys and gals that make up our team. To begin, I turn the microphone on myself.


You’re the Deputy Editor! What does that mean and what do you do?

What a brilliant question. It pretty much means I wear all of the hats, I’ve got my finger in every [D] flavoured pie (sounds foul but the metaphor works.) I am Summer’s right hand woman. I oversee all things DRAFT. From PR to the more logistical side of things like shipping and distribution. I work closely with Sum and converse with her daily. We are two peas in a very arty, #cool pod. As we’re such a small team, each person in the [D] family has a super important role and a number of responsibilities. We’re a little team making a big statement.

Where were you before this/doing what?

I was writing my little blog YECRAD. I began that site when I was about 16 and was completely swept up in the world of fashion. I frequented style.com and knew exactly who was wearing what. I loved writing my blog, going to fashion week and meeting people I had admired from afar. I thoroughly enjoyed interviewing different people. However, I soon became bored with the materialist nature of fashion blogging and was looking for something more challenging. I had mentioned this to Sum and soon enough, DRAFT was born.

What did you go to school for?

I am currently at RMIT University studying a Bachelor of Communication majoring in Public Relations. I have only just begun my degree this year but am enjoying it thus far. I am contemplating a gap year next year though, I'm desperate to go overseas.

How did you get started at DRAFT?

It was quite literally a Facebook message from Summer. I pretty much gave her no choice other than allowing me to be involved. It took about a month until we settled on a name and concept, and ‘DRAFT’ was born.

Favourite part of your job?

I get to work with a tribe of cool cats who are cooler, more intelligent and far less funny than me. On a more serious note, being able to work alongside Summer is such a pleasure. She is so intelligent and shares my passion for creating with a purpose. I feel so lucky to be involved in such an exciting, innovative project with some of my favourite people.

Least favourite part of your job?

My endless to-do list. It can be super overwhelming, especially on top of full time university and working two jobs.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I want to be happy, healthy and having fun.

What’s one piece of advice you can offer to someone who wants a job like yours?

Create it! So many people I know say how lucky I am to be able to do the things I do whether it be writing my blog or for the magazine. If you want to do something, just do it! Create a blog, start an online store, join a football team, do a short course. Stop making excuses, take control and forge your own path.

Tell me something weird about you.

I genuinely celebrate left handers day every year. #lefthandedlegends (August 13th, fyi)

Darcey is a 19 year old Public Relations student at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT). At 16, she began writing her fashion and lifestyle blog YECRAD.com, where her passion for writing and connecting with young like-minded creatives began. For more, follow her @darceyward or at yecrad.com

Welcome DRAFT #2

I met up with an old friend the other night. He asked me about the magazine, as expected. I was almost caught off guard. I knew what to say, but I didn't want to say it. I lied, 'I'm not sure what my plan is', 'I'm out of my depth', 'what's a business plan??'.

I really felt the need to revise my initial welcome. This second draft is an example of what I was trying to say in draft #1. Mistakes are necessary for progress.

The whole idea of the magazine is to educate people. The fact that I'm leading this cause allows for people to judge whether they think I'm qualified or capable or knowledgable enough. I have this fear that people won't take me seriously, or they'll view our information with a pre-conceived perception of what they're reading, based on the source. So when discussing the magazine with others, I often find myself discussing it through a lens that delegitimises it's importance. If they think I'm wrong, I've already said that I am. That way I'm one step ahead.

In a bid to sound supportive, a lot of people have told me of their 'surprise' that my initial welcome was articulate and eloquent. I know, I'm not an idiot - but it throws you off guard when someone infers they thought that you were. It was clear that the other night I made the subconscious decision to assume the role as the idiot. It's easier to meet someones expectations of stupidity, rather than try and prove them otherwise.

And so, I want to say thank you. If you support us, if you read this website, if you buy our magazine, you're making a conscious effort to learn. You don't have to. We can choose to close our eyes and block our ears and accept the world for the way it is, but it takes guts to admit this won't solve anything. I know it's not easy. I know it's easy to ignore. But knowledge is power and power is intimidating for others. If we really want to incite change, this intimidation exerted by others in the form of skepticism has to be accepted.

In our society, there's almost an expectation that when you're young you don't know anything. Like the world is only learnt about, through time. That age means wisdom. That one year older, means one year smarter. I know I'm intelligent enough to do this, and where I fall short I have my team and the internet and the opportunity to fail, to back me up. I have eighteen years under my belt, but knowledge that exceeds what is associated with that eighteen years.

It's not the time we have here, it's how we spend it.

Make your choice.

Asian Identity: The Race to Equality

I guess you could say it all started with The Goonies.

What’s the Goonies? It’s an 80's film about a bunch of kids who find a treasure map - adventure ensues. But more importantly, it’s where I, a 7-year-old kid remember turning to my sister and going “Woah, there’s an Asian in this film.” Because most Western films I’d watched didn’t have Asians in them. And even less films had an Asian American actor playing one of the main characters. And all I could think of while watching was “that’s a kid like me.”

Not a lot has changed since then. 

To read more, purchase a copy of DRAFT Magazine, Issue 1: The Kids Are Alright - Available Now. 

Danielle Hioe (aka Elle) is currently studying a Bachelor of Communication (Media Arts and Production) and a Bachelor of International Studies at UTS. She has always had a keen interest in what it means to grow up Asian in Australia, and her many interests compose of fashion, cinematography, music, memes, sad Japanese novels and foreign films. Follow Elle on Instagram @14strk.

'IDENTITY II DANIELLE' was posted by Tara (fashionbambini) and explores Elle's views on Asian misrepresentation in western media and a variety of other topics. For more from Tara, follow her on Instagram and YouTube.

Welcome

I feel some sort of vulnerability right now. This magazine thus far is a physical manifestation of the last few months of my life. It's the late nights, the early mornings, the weekly meetings in the Melbourne Central food court, and what seems to be the never ending to-do list.

We're a small team but we have a big dream. For a long time now, I've noticed that there's a gap in the market. The need for a platform that provides information. We are young people. We're speaking to young people. We're discussing topics that aren't discussed - they're controversial, they're underground, they're ignored. We are the future. And we can't afford to be ignorant.

While developing the vision for this project, we realised the huge amount of untapped creative talent within our generation. We're here to support both local and international artists. To share their work, discuss their ideas, and provide exposure to people that deserve it.

I'm so excited that I'm able to create a platform that allows young people to speak about issues of their choosing. To have a voice, and be heard. We have contributors ranging from the ages of fourteen to twenty five. From Melbourne to Canada. From Indigenous Australians to Americans. Both men and women. 

The name DRAFT explains what we stand for. We're here to make noise. We're here to empower young people. We do acknowledge that we're young - we want to learn and we want to inform, and sometimes we'll get it wrong. DRAFT for me, is abandoning perfection - there's so much pressure on our generation to set high expectations. In high school I became my own harshest critic and my own worst enemy. The concept of a draft should be really positive. It's an opportunity to try new things. It's an opportunity to have a go. But most importantly, it's an opportunity to learn.

The launch of this website is step one. It's nowhere near the end, if anything this is quite literally just the beginning. This website serves to start a discussion. 

We'll be posting new content twice a week on Wednesday and Sunday nights at 6pm EST. Expect the unexpected, we're looking to shake things up. Shoot us an email at editor@d-magazine.com.au or visit our submissions page if you want to be involved. 

Thank you for supporting us on this journey, hopefully I'll see you in December if you're willing to stick around for this self imposed emotional rollercoaster. 

The 'supposed' Age of Entitlement

From the Age of Enlightenment to the Age of Entitlement - are we entering the next great period of cultural revolution? Or is this just another one of those bed time stories our beloved baby-boomers have told us over the years?

For years Australian millennials have been labelled as lazy and living in an ‘entitlement culture,’ most evident in former coalition treasurer Joe Hockey’s rhetoric. This condescension is still alive and well, evident with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s recent blunders regarding first time homebuyers, stating in an interview that wealthy parents should ‘shell-out’ and buy their children homes. It is in many ways infuriating that these heedless sentiments are being expressed amongst the political elite of the country. Instead of providing tangible advice or assistance to the multitude of young Australians struggling in the housing market, Turnbull has chosen to proliferate the meme of the ‘self-entitled millennial.’ Instead of acknowledging the impregnable hold that negative gearing has on housing affordability, Turnbull sneers at the hundreds of thousands of young Australians who face the constantly growing intergenerational wealth gap in this country.

The sad reality of these events is that many around the country shake their heads, unsurprised by this. It’s no secret that the Liberal Party, in a sense, is a manifestation of the actual entitled population of Australia; the wealthy and the baby boomers. As they sit in their homes, millions of young Australians face the prospect of not ever being able to afford one of their own. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics in 1985 the average price of a household in Sydney equated to 3.5 years of a person’s annual income, compared to current prices in 2016 equating to roughly a 10 year salary. This objective reality should mean something to the older generations, however it turns into a peripheral issue whenever they are made aware of it. The common response to any millennial trying to raise an issue such as this is that they don’t want to work as hard as ‘we did back in the day.’ This kind of attitude adds insult to injury; misrepresenting a call for equal opportunity to one of entitled laziness. Here, the crux of the issue can be seen, the entitlement does not come from the younger generations, it comes from the ignorant and wealthy.

Accompanying this entitlement is the seemingly lack of empathy for the Darwinian social climate that Australia’s youth enter. Since the recession of the 1990s, and its reinforcement with the 2009 global financial crisis, Australian youth are entering a world where they cannot survive without skills and experience. Contrary to this message is the distressingly low post-graduate employment rates and possibilities. As we grew up, we were told that the world was at our fingertips and all that was required of us was hard work and dedication. From looking at the statistics it’s clear this tale isn’t as wondrous as we were once told it would be. Although it’s obvious that well-qualified Australians have higher possibilities of being employed than the latter, according to a survey conducted by Graduate Careers Australia in July 2015, 32 per cent of 2014 graduates were still struggling to find employment up to four months or more following the completion of their degree. In addition to this, the survey found that between 15 to 30 per cent of graduates were forced to give up their career aspirations and dreams to seek jobs elsewhere due to lack of employment possibilities.

This lack of employment possibilities was yet again sneered at by the current coalition with the Liberal Party’s 2016 budget, outlining an internship program. This program proposes a $4 per hour wage, less than a quarter of the current minimum wage in Australia. Akin to previous attempts, this proposal does little to satiate the needs and hunger of young Australians trying to enter the workforce. It opens up the possibilities for employers to manipulate interns, exemplified in an Interns Australia report in 2015 which found that 86.4% of the surveyed interns did not go on to receive paid employment from that company.

The sentiments that these kind of policy proposals and the baby-booming generation emanate is that Gen-Y should feel privileged to have some form of paid employment. This is reflected with the insecurity in employment length, with contract work and part-time employment the highest amongst young Australians than ever in history.

As we enter the road to the election, with the ballots opening on July 2nd, out of the almost one million Australians not enrolled to vote, 350,000 of them are young Australians. This signifies a lack of trust and lack of care in the political system; they feel that their interests are not represented nor are their voices heard. It is saddening, yet not surprising to find this kind of opposition amongst millennials. With the sheer wealth and cantankerous cultural influence that the baby-boomers have, the government has had no choice but to make policy decisions that only have their best interests in mind. The most evident of these have been the resistance of addressing negative gearing, the most important factor in the inflation of Australia’s property prices. By allowing the losses on rental properties to be claimed as tax against an investor’s other forms of income, it has allowed property owners to grow their wealth at the expense of affordable housing for millions of young Australians.

The reality is simple, the claims made by the older generations that the Australian youth is living in an age of entitlement is factually and literally incorrect. As they spout their rhetoric in an attempt to further inflate their ego’s, talking about the thousands of hours they spent working every week compared to the youth today, they disregard the real issues facing millions of young Australians. With post-graduate unemployment and tertiary education costs increasing, and spiralling housing affordability issues, the hypocrisy of their sentiments is astounding. The true entitled and peevish population in Australia are our baby-boomers; in one generation they have almost used up almost all of the world’s natural resources, effectively polluting the planet to a degree that we now face seemingly insurmountable challenges in regards to climate change. They have destroyed Australian industry with their greed; creating a system which benefits from the shipping production and labour costs offshore, instead of providing employment opportunities for young Australians. In addition, they have pushed for policies which prioritise pushing wealth into their retirement funds so they are able to live their lavish lifestyles whilst their grandchildren face the fortified intergenerational wealth gap. 

Michael Luck is currently undertaking a Bachelor of Psychological Science at The University of Queensland (UQ). With a passion for psychology and politics he is interested with the link between the two. Michael's writing is primarily influenced by eminent thinkers such as Sam Harris and the late Christopher Hitchens. For more, follow Michael on Twitter @minkey13 and on Instagram @minkey.exe.

Believe it or not, you count.

The right to vote is possibly the most sacred tenet of democracy, yet increasingly, young people are shunning their ability to enact social and political change.

The Australian youth vote has long been something not quite attainable by the major political parties. With no consistent ideology uniting them, securing the support of young people has been difficult at best and completely random at worst.

With eighteen to twenty-four year olds making up 30% of eligible voters, young people represent the single largest untapped resource in the Australian political landscape. Unlike older demographics, this potentially powerful group experiences the lowest level of voter participation in the nation, with 25% of young voters not enrolled for the 2013 federal election (AYCC). Even more alarmingly, 48% of eighteen year olds were not enrolled to vote at the beginning of 2016 (ABS), effectively handicapping the voice of a key portion of voters.

It would be easy to dismiss this disturbing trend as the result of political inadequacy, but the issue runs deeper than that. Whilst the post-Howard era has seen few enticing political options, it is the lack of visible policy that has created a political atmosphere of inactivity amongst the youth. Characters like Bill Shorten and Malcolm Turnbull are immediately discernible, with most major news outlets providing considerable coverage. Yet despite possessing figureheads, the major parties have failed to effectively communicate their policies to the youth. Most young people do not know the Labor party’s position on negative gearing, or the percentage of renewable energy usage they have committed to. Many youth have some nebulous idea that the Greens support climate action and asylum rights, yet Greens leader Richard di Natale is somewhat anonymous to hundreds of thousands of young people. The inability of modern politicians to disseminate their views and provide appealing leadership has resulted in the disengagement of youth the country is now experiencing.

The result of this is far darker than mere disinterest, however. The lack of effective channels for political communication to this audience has culminated into a largely ignorant youth population. This trend is not unique to Australia with the European Union, Great Britain and the United States experiencing low youth votes. This is an issue of an incredible magnitude, as democracy relies on two-way communication for optimum efficiency. Politicians – Labor, Liberal or Greens – will continue making laws which affect the youth, but with no reciprocal communication.

It can be assumed that high percentages of youth voting translates to their interests being represented in parliament, but low turnouts can have disastrous consequences. Perhaps the most significant example of youth interests being compromised was the Liberal government’s decision to rescind massive amounts of funding to tertiary education and attempt to deregulate universities in the 2014 Federal Budget.

However, there are encouraging signs that youth voting will see an uptick. Following the 2014 budget - thousands of young people took to the streets to protest, and it is this united front that is at least partially responsible for the Liberals’ promise of new education funding and the temporary withdrawal of the deregulation proposal. This proves the ability of the youth to make a positive change. Increased electoral participation would usher in a future where youth interests are represented, without resorting to protest and direct action; democracy would once again be restored.

Concerns over equality, the environment and the asylum situation are dividing the nation, but a strong youth voter turnout could give these issues the support they need. The Liberal government’s reluctance to address significant moves towards renewable energy and LGBT rights has quite rightly rankled many of the youth, whose futures are set to be affected by this inactivity. With more young people supporting environmental reform and gay marriage than any other demographic, increasing youth participation in the democratic process is vital to usher in these changes.

Perceptions of Labor’s snug relationship with the Unions, and the Liberals’ propensity to support those with established wealth has left many youth disenchanted. This despair at the available political options has devolved into ignorance, with too many young people lingering on the periphery of the electoral discussion. This self-silencing of one of the nation’s most powerful voices is a detriment to every Australian, but those who don’t vote hurt themselves the most.

Whilst no large-scale political disenfranchisement is present in this ominous situation, it is undeniably a crucial issue. The youth of today face an incredibly uncertain future, with rising housing costs, increasing off-shoring of jobs and new technologies hurriedly altering the relatively placid realm in which their parents and grandparents operated. This uncharted territory makes it crucial that the youth voice is heard so that the transition into the vagaries of the future is as smooth as possible. A strong footing now is essential to ensure that young people do not reach their primes already at a disadvantage.

Facing the worst employment prospects of any generation since World War II, this generation of young voters is feeling the pressure to secure their financial futures. Wage growth for people in their twenties has been half of what people in their fifties have experienced over the last twenty three years, and this issue won’t be corrected by inactivity. Simultaneously facing the most dire environmental situation of the last several hundred thousand years, environmental action is also a crucial ideological concept of the youth.

The Liberals have damaged their reputation with the youth because of their education and asylum policies, and their environmental inactivity, while the scars from Labor’s bloody leadership coups remain fresh in the minds of young voters brought into political consciousness by Kevin Rudd’s prime ministership. The Greens remain appealing to many but the perception that they lack substance as a party continues to hurt them. All the major parties possess significant flaws, which provide an opportunity for the minor parties to find an avenue to the youth community.

Political divisions exist everywhere, and the youth of Australia is no exception. Whichever way young people choose to vote on July 2nd, the most crucial thing is that they do vote. With 400,000 young people unenrolled at the last federal election (Student Edge), the voice of the youth is marginalised. However, with those 400,000 voices informing the next government and their agenda, the potential impact is limitless. Young people have an exceptionally powerful sway in the political world, but exerting it is the first step towards a future that represents the current and future leaders of Australia.

Dante Boffa is currently studying a Bachelor of Communication (Public Relations) at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT). He begun writing at an early age, and has an interest in current affairs and classic literature, his influences are varied and ever expanding. For more, follow Dante on Instagram @thedoontsboff

Here at DRAFT we believe it's important to be well informed on the key leaders, policies, values and beliefs of each party before voting. Click on the thumbnails below to learn more.