news

Friday's news in 5 minutes.

1. Breastfeeding mum angry after a Muslim woman used a parent’s room cubicle as a prayer room meaning she had to feed her baby out in the open.

A breastfeeding mother has demanded her local Westfield put signage above the cubicles in the parent’s room saying they’re for the exclusive use of nursing mums after she was “inconvenienced” when she went to use a cubicle and it was taken up by a women praying.

She said she hopes no other mother has to “endure” what she did.

Tatiana, who did not use her last name, told The Leader she reluctantly decided to feed her son on the couch in the shared area of the room at Westfield Doncaster, Melbourne, with other kids running about and playing.

“As I continued to sit there and feed my baby, one of the toddlers whom I assumed was her child, pulled open the curtains and there was the woman on the floor praying,” Tatjana said.

“Now I don’t have issues with religion or praying, but I was shocked that this family thought it was OK to take up this room to pray, while my son was denied a feeding room.”

“I hope no other mother has to endure this, and I would like to see signage in these rooms explaining what they are used for.”

Tatjana said “I know I can feed anywhere I like, but at the moment, he’s so inquisitive that he wants to pull his head out all the time and it’s just easier to be somewhere quiet and private.”

Tatjana said she contacted centre management but was not happy to be told they would’t be acting to stop praying women from using the rooms.

Centre management told Tatjana it would only police the use of the cubicles if “publicly indecent or dangerous” activity was taking place.

Tatjana said it isn’t good enough, adding, “I thought it was a cop-out and brush of the shoulder response. I’m sure if I was in a prayer room feeding my baby, there would be outrage.”

2. Gable Tostee’s arrest record revealed.

Gable Tostee, who was yesterday found not guilty of the murder of New Zealander Warriena Wright after she plunged to her death from his 14th storey apartment in 2014, had been arrested before.

In 2006, Tostee was ordered to undertake 200 hours of community service for his role in a forgery racket, while two weeks before Ms Wright’s death Tostee was arrested and served six months jail for a high speed pursuit with police and drink driving.

The Courier Mail reports Tostee was the mastermind of the 2006 fake ID racket, along with two friends he provided perfect fake IDS for the schoolies crowd.

By the time police raided the three friends who ran it in late 2004 the business had brought in $30,000 for the trio.

Upon his arrest police found a perfect copy of a forged $50 note Tostee had reproduced.

ADVERTISEMENT

When he went to court Tostee was labelled the “mastermind” by the Crown prosecutor and was said to be “partially autistic.”

He was said to be suffering from severe obsessive compulsive disorder but had exceptional skills in art and drafting.

The judge said Gable Tostee “has extraordinary talents that must be harnessed in such a manner to ensure the products of his abilities are not illicit.”

3. Gable Tostee has explained why he recorded his night when Warriena Wright died.

"I regularly made audio recordings of my drunk nights on the town in case something happened."

On last night’s episode of The Project Gable Tostee’s lawyer Nick Dore said he didn’t have an answer as to why Tostee recorded audio throughout the night of Warriena Wright’s death.

“Um… I’m unaware as to why it was recorded,” Dore admitted.

“Obviously it was lucky it was recorded, otherwise, if it wasn’t, no-one would have believed what transpired that night.”

But Tosette has previously explained why he made the recording in a blog post he wrote before the trial on a body building forum.

Tostee wrote: "I think it's time I spoke out about the events that have happened over the last few months. Those aware will know I am referring to the tragic death of Warriena Wright."

He said Wright's death was "the most tragic and distressing event I have ever experienced".

He said he started chatting to Wright and how the night became messy as Wright became drunker.

He said, "Hindsight is 20/20."

Tostee wrote on the forum in 2014: "It's easy for readers to say what they would have done given hindsight, but it is impossible to know how you would react if you weren't there."

He claims he had security cameras in his previous apartment solely for security, saying it had helped him catch a thief – a girl he said stole from his wallet.

He explained the recordings as being like insurance, in case he ever got into trouble.

"I regularly made audio recordings of my drunk nights on the town in case something happened. I kept them for myself but didn't need to listen to them 99% of the time. It's so easy to do using a smartphone and comes at such a small cost, and sometimes the recordings have been invaluable."

4. Bullying victim "bore some blame" for bullying because he didn’t report it.

The royal commission into children with problematic or harmful sexual behaviours in schools has heard that a student who was ejaculated on by another student at The King’s School in Sydney’s Parramatta was told he “bore part of the blame” for being bullied “because he didn’t report the incident.”

The Daily Telegraph reports that school principal Dr Tim Hawkes told the boy's parents their son “bore some of the blame and responsibility” because “he did not report the camp incident when it occurred”.

ADVERTISEMENT

The Year 9 boy was on a school camp when he had his sleeping bag ejaculated on by another student in April 2013.

The boy was then subjected to months of bulling in which he was referred to as a “cum rag” and “cum dumpster”.

In October another student had even changed the name of a Wi-Fi network to say “(boy’s name) cum rag”.

The father of a boy raped “50 times” by other students with a wooden dildo at Summer Hill’s Trinity Grammar also gave evidence.

“It was disgusting. No one ever told us anything more than the assault against (our son) was serious. We had no idea of the nature of the assault, that it was actually rape, that (he) had been tied up and that it happened to him at least 50 times,” he told the inquiry.

For help: Lifeline 13 11 14. Kid's Helpline: 1800 55 1800. DV and Sexual Abuse hotline 27/4: 1800 737 732 Men's helpline: 1300 78 99 78 

5. Child protection workers stopped monitoring Mildura toddler Nikki Francis-Coslovich's home life when her mum began seeing the man accused of her murder.

Child protection workers, who previously monitored Nikki Francis-Coslovich's stopped when her mother’s new boyfriend moved in, saying the case was closed after the home began to improve.

The Age reports that previous concerns that she was at “significant risk” such as cat faeces on the floor and overflowing bins changed when John Clifford Torney moved in and the home environment "dramatically" improved.

John Clifford Torney, 32, accused of murdering Nikki at the family home in August 2015.

Her mother, Peta-Ann Francis raised the alarm that she was missing after Francis and Torney woke from drug induced “nap” and noticed the toddler was gone.

"And that was the view of the department, was it not, that as a consequence of her partnering with Mr John Torney, that the home environment had dramatically improved; correct?" Torney's barrister Julie Condon asked Ms Cavallo in court yesterday.

"He – he certainly had a role in cleaning the house, assisting her," Ms Cavallo said.

6. Donald Trump facing new sexual assault allegation.

Donald Trump is facing fresh sexual assault allegations after a woman claims he inappropriately touched her at a tennis event.

Karena Virginia told a press conference the Republican presidential candidate made lewd comments before touching her breast at the 1998 US Open in 1998.

Ms Virginia said she was coming forward now because of Mr Trump's insistence he respects women.

Ms Virginia recounted the incident which she said took place when Mr Trump approached her as she waited for a car.

ADVERTISEMENT

She alleged that he was with a group of men when he made comments about her legs and what she was wearing.

Ms Virginia said: "I was quite surprised when I overheard him talking to the other men about me. He said 'Hey look at this one, we haven't seen her before. Look at those legs'. As though I was an object rather than a person".

She claimed Mr Trump then walked up to her and grabbed her right arm and touched the inside of her breast.

Ms Virginia said the only words that Mr Trump spoke directly to her were "don't you know who I am?".

She said the incident left her feeling "intimidated, powerless and ashamed".

"Mr Trump” she told the press conference “perhaps you do not remember me or what you did to me so many years ago, but I can assure you that I remember you and what you did to me as though it was yesterday."

7. Treasury boss says don’t worry about “smashed avocado” we should worry about the price of coffee.

Treasury boss John Fraser has told a Senate estimates hearing says housing affordability is a “worry” but that “smashed avocado” isn’t the problem.

This week KPMG partner Bernard Salt suggested young Australians should be spending less on breakfast and instead be saving for a home deposit.

"I have seen young people order smashed avocado with crumbled feta on five-grain toasted bread at $22 a pop and more," Salt wrote in a column.

"I can afford to eat this for lunch because I am middle-aged and have raised my family. But how can young people afford to eat like this? They spend too much money on “smashed avocado”.

Mr Fraser, appearing at a Senate estimates hearing dismissed the avocado as the problem, reports The Herald Sun.

“I understand the issue,” he said. “But I prefer people to start talking about the exorbitant price of coffee in Melbourne. It’s got to be the highest in the world.”

He told the committee young Australians were being forced to rely on the “bank of mum and dad” when buying their first home.

“I haven’t found many people who are not saying ‘we’ve got to help the kids’."

“I talk with people my age, and the bank of mum and dad is becoming more and more prevalent,” he said.

“It has impacts on superannuation, and why people are saving in their older years to fund their children’s housing needs.”

Do you have a story to share with Mamamia? Email us [email protected]