1 April Interview with CNN's Rosemary Church about the plight of Stranded Aussies

Rosemary Church interviews Jason

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      1. Correct misunderstandings more quickly and succinctly, reiterate key issues and actions sought.

      E.g. Rosemary's misunderstanding / question (2:00-2:17)  re if the problem is related mainly to people who want to move families (& furniture) back permanently. Valuable on-air seconds were lost with the response that did not succinctly correct / clarify. Response should have been.. 

      - No, it’s not just those wanting to permanently repatriate, any Australian wanting to come back home, for whatever reason, or period, is unable to, due to unreasonable, unethical quotas on entry.

      2. Don’t weaken or undermine intended goals & solution steps.

      E.g. Was great stating there should be no queue (line) for Aussies trying to get back, but then this was undermined by saying the more needy should be prioritized (i.e. accepting there will always be a queue / line). While that’s ethically true the “needy” should be prioritized, in reality the Govt would not be able to effectively assess one person’s “greater” needs over another, resulting in more slow bureaucracy and only moving the needle a fraction on the intended goal, of getting everyone back, now. Stick to intended goal. I.e. No Queue at all. .. and that Govt action needs to be taken now, to reduce the suffering of Australians. Suffering ironically caused by the Australian government on it’s citizens, not the Covid-19 disease.

      3. The Govt policy affects in-bound and outbound. We must show empathy for all “stranded” Aussies, by clarifying “Stranded” in a broader definition.

      Great this is not about one individual’s story, but instead, the “stranded” group as a whole. However, the “stranded” needs to include not just those Aussies trying to get home, but the people in Australia who need to leave the country to be with a spouse, children, family overseas, of which most are denied by the Govt, unethically and possibly illegally. Aussies are left stranded (from being with family), both overseas and in Australia. It is the only Country denying people leaving, and for no legitimate reason. This entire issue was not stated and needs to be. It also runs the risk of being mistakenly perceived that there is a self interest of just those overseas who want to get home. FYI - I haven’t been able to get home to be with my children and family, nor have my children been able to leave Aust and to see me here in the States.

      4. Motivate the viewers (public) to pick up the cause behaviorally, not just attitudinally, helping exert pressure on the Govt.

      Great to get first-step viewer empathy when you stated, “imagine if you (the viewer) were not able to see family”. But any empathy garnered needs to be quickly translated into action, otherwise the emotion dissipates. The point above needs to be immediately followed up with a sentence that appeals to the desire in all Aussies, to help their fellow Aussies. This will awaken the latent egalitarian desire in all Aussies for fairness, especially against an entity which may be abusing its power - big corp. govt etc. This will ALSO help overcome an incorrect perceptual barrier to empathy, being that some Aussies (in Aust) have the misperception that to those overseas don’t deserve empathy - ie. "Those wealthy Aussie expats that now want to come home", or, "those Aussies should have known better than be stuck overseas". Any educated and caring person knows this is a false view, but in order to exert max pressure on the Govt, we need the masses, the everyman Aussie in the street, to empathize and feel a sense of pride and urgency to help their fellow Aussies in need, be they overseas, or in Aust trying to get to loved ones overseas.

      5. Communicate (hammer home) the main “Call to Action” that any viewer can do (not just think or feel) to help their fellow Aussies  - today. 

      Irrespective of interviewer questions, and ideally written as well as verbal. E.g. Call 1800 or visit govt website, or write to the specific individuals in Govt who have the power to repeal such inhumane, callous policies.


      Paul S. [New York]

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      • Thanks for the constructive comments Paul. I really appreciate it.

        Whereas I am one of the petitioners in the case to the US Human Rights Committee in Geneva, I'm not a media specialist. Like every one of us, I'm just an ordinary Aussie who can't get home. My background is in science / corporate and whereas I'm perfectly comfortable standing in a room full of people and talking about my subject & my passions, the TV is different for sure. We've all gotten used to being in front of a camera over this last year, but when when the countdown ends & you're suddenly live, I've concluded the best thing I can contribute is to speak from the heart about how I feel about this - both from my own perspective & what I feel about the wider situation that is happening to others.

        In the early days, a lot of the media outlets are interested to talk to a petitioner & I'm happy to put myself into the spotlight on this subject because I fundamentally believe that if we don't try to change things, then we must expect nothing to change. That's not acceptable to me. But I also know that Australia is famous for it's tall poppy syndrome & I do expect people may try to cut me down because I'm raising my head above all the other poppies. 

        A close knit group of amazing people - all volunteers - are working tirelessly to help drive this cause. I am humbled to to see what individuals are prepared to do, on top of their lives & day jobs, to make this happen. But we will all be needed to help to drive this to success. If you, or any other members in the community are media trained, I would be very happy to talk and get any tips you may have. At the end of the day, I am just a passionate guy who has a very personal need to get my family back to see sick & elderly family in Australia, and who also happens to be one of the three petitioners in this case. The last point is bound to make me interesting to media channels, but it doesn't make me the only spokesperson for us stranded Aussies & I'm confident that there are others in this group that will be much better able, and qualified to help make our case going forward.

        Others are also putting themselves out there of course, and that's the right thing to do because it's going to take a village to fix this - and a big one too. There are probably 100,000 of us in this situation, around 40,000 of whom are desperate to get back. I'm fond of the saying that a picture paints a thousand words, and to put our plight into context the GABBA holds 42,000 people. Just imagine the power of orchestrating that many voices to speak in unison on this subject - especially for the sake of the 5,000 who are vulnerable & have dire need to return to Australia.

        So together we stand & anything that anyone can do to help amplify awareness, raise awareness back in Australia, and support those who are putting themselves out there can only be hugely appreciated. I for one, am all ears :)


        Jason - Stranded Aussie in New Jersey


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      • Thanks for taking the time to reply Jason. Especially honored, given you’re a petitioner. Glad you found the points I shared helpful. Totally agree public speaking gets harder in front of a camera and even harder if live, with an experienced interviewer. 

        My experience comes from a career in Marketing & Advertising. I’ve since moved into the arts. I have some media training, but not an expert. My expertise areas are strategy, human motivations, message / idea creation and management. I’d be honored to chat if you think I may be of help. I'll send you a direct message with my personal email. And while sharing symbolic images, this fighter jet came to mind, which for me has connotations of intensity and speed of action.




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