Bishop’s corporatised aid plan set to damage communities, cost lives

The Australian Greens say the federal government’s plan for overseas aid announced today is reminiscent of the discredited aid policies of the 1980s with Australian companies set to profit at the expense of impoverished communities in the Asia Pacific region.
 
“Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has corporatised Australia’s overseas aid program to such a degree it will cost lives, while opening the door to corrupt practices,” said Greens international aid and development spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon.
 
“Aid for trade and massive spending on large scale infrastructure projects represents a far reaching realignment of our aid program towards Australia’s interests over that of aid recipient countries and communities.
 
“Most of the nations that receive our aid do not have a strong private sector. It will be foreign multinationals or Australian companies that will pick up the infrastructure contracts.

Budget falls short on investment to break the cycle of disadvantage

he NSW Budget has attempted to manage the crisis facing vulnerable people and families but lacks the vision to break the generational cycle, warns Greens MP and spokesperson on Family and Community Services and Housing, Jan Barham.
 
"If this Government trumpeted investments in support for disadvantaged people and families like it does for roads, we could secure long-term reductions in risk, harm and homelessness. Investing in prevention and early support services will deliver long-term savings and reduce the need for crisis services in the years and decades to come," Ms Barham said.
 
"The Budget includes some new funding to address the crisis in child protection and homelessness services, but the Government's own projections show they aren't expecting reductions in the number of people who need those services.
 
"The Government has again failed to display the long-term vision required to deliver what the evidence shows is required - a major investment in prevention and early supports for vulnerable families, combined with secure and affordable housing to address the massive social housing waiting list."

The privatisation budget for the big end of town

The Baird government is undermining the state's future revenue base to promise big projects for an election year and deliver tax cuts to the corporate sector, according to Greens NSW MP John Kaye.
 
Dr Kaye said: "Treasurer Andrew Constance says that his government is now in control of the NSW budget.
 
"This is untrue.
 
"Real control has passed to the business sector who will reap the benefits of more than $780 million in the abolition of transfer and duty taxes.
 
"The construction industry will profit from the so-called recycling of assets and the business community will reap a lion's share of the benefits of new infrastructure.
 
"Big business has a Treasurer and a Premier who give them exactly what they want, despite the long term impacts on services and the state's revenue base.

Injured workers continue to hurt, while employers have their costs cut

Injured workers who are struggling to survive on workers compensation benefits have been struck another blow by the NSW Coalition government with its budget decision to cut employer premiums by 5% rather than using this money to restore benefits that were slashed in 2012 'reforms' .
 
Greens MP and Justice Spokesperson David Shoebridge said:
 
"Thousands of injured workers are living at or below the poverty line under this brutal scheme, but rather than restoring their benefits the Baird Government has chosen to cut employer premiums.