THE HON RICHARD MARLES MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR IMMIGRATION AND BORDER PROTECTION
MEMBER FOR CORIO
MICHELLE ROWLAND MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR CITIZENSHIP AND MULTICULTULRALISM
SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR COMMUNICATIONS
MEMBER FOR GREENWAY
TONY ABBOTT’S BUDGET LETS DOWN ETHNIC COMMUNITIES
Today in Melbourne we briefed ethnic media about the terrible impact of the Abbott Government’s Budget on culturally and linguistically diverse communities.
The key concerns raised at the briefing included the abolition of non-contributory parent visa, cuts to funding for multicultural programs, the SBS, health and education, as well as changes to the pension.
In his Budget, Mr Abbott abolished the Non-contributory Parent visa category and Other Family visa Category (including Aged Dependent Relative, Remaining Relative and Carer).
This decision will mean low and middle-income families will have no way of bringing their parents to Australia, unless they can reportedly pay up to $125,000.
In a mean and sneaky move the Abbott Government snuck this through by Legislative Instrument with absolutely no notice to the community. The Labor Opposition will stand up for ethnic communities and move a disallowance motion in the Parliament to reverse this cruel decision.
The Abbott Government’s Budget cuts have created great uncertainty in the sector, putting many critical programs and services at risk.
Some organisations that were awarded funding by the previous Labor Government have had it ripped from their hands.
Before the election, Tony Abbott promised no cuts to the SBS:
“…no cuts to the ABC or SBS”
Tony Abbott – SBS News – 6 September 2013
But he’s broken that promise by ripping $8 million out of the SBS in his Budget.
This will seriously affect ethnic communities in Australia as many migrant communities rely heavily on specialist news and language services that are only provided by SBS.
Before the election Tony Abbott also promised he wouldn’t cut health, education, or change the pension:
“…no cuts to health, no cuts to education, no changes to pensions…”
Tony Abbott – ABC News – 6 September 2013
But in his Budget, he broke every single one of those promises.
Tony Abbott’s Budget cuts $80 billion from hospitals and schools – the biggest in Australian history.
Tony Abbott’s broken promise on changes to pensions is an unprecedented attack on Australia’s pension system, and the millions of people who rely on it.
Tony Abbott will slash the current fair indexation system – which makes sure the pension keeps pace with the cost of living. Had Tony Abbott’s new indexation system been in place for the last four years, a single pensioner on the maximum rate would be over $1,500 a year worse off than they are today.
The Budget will also increase the pension age to 70 by 2035. Australians will have to work longer, and their pension will be significantly reduced when they finally do retire.
Australia’s 3.5 million pensioners – already living on a very modest pension of around $20,000 – are going to have their pensions cut, while millionaires will receive up to $50,000 to have a baby.
FRIDAY, 20 JUNE 2014