The Australian Greens have condemned attempts to mislead organisations into supporting the Stronger Futures legislation, which extends and expands the NT Intervention.
“A campaign appears to have started, presumably with the backing of the Government, to imply that by not supporting Stronger Futures, the Greens are opposing the ongoing funding of essential services in the NT- including services for primary health,” Greens Senator Rachel Siewert said today.
“Regardless of where it originated, this campaign is offensive and it is untrue.
“Organisations appear to have been told this and are clearly being misled.
“There is no reason that funding for community programs and resources, including those for primary health, cannot continue in the absence of the Stronger Futures legislation or if Stronger Futures has a shorter sunset clause of five years.
“The Greens fundamentally believe such investments need to be increased and improved, and are committed to getting increased funding for services in the NT.
“Any attempt to claim otherwise is disingenuous.
“It is wrong for the Government to link continued funding of these programs to the heavily criticised Stronger Futures legislation.
“It is clear the Government is using the threat of withdrawing services to force people to support Stronger Futures. This is coercion. Community organisations need to be asking the Government why services are being linked to Stronger Futures when the services we are talking about are not those being delivered by Stronger Futures
“This is clearly designed to pressure the Greens because we have been attempting to reduce the sunset clause from 10 years to 5 years in Stronger Futures legislation,” Senator Siewert concluded.