Senate supports Greens motion calling on Government to combat child poverty

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The Senate has supported a Greens motion calling on the Government to combat child poverty and adopt a comprehensive anti-poverty strategy.

“The motion comes after last week’s release of the Australian Child Wellbeing Project final report that found 10-20% of Australian kids are going to bed hungry and estimates by ACOSS that nearly 20% of Australian kids live below the poverty line” Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert said.

“This statistic reflects a social security net that has been under unrelenting attacks from successive Federal governments, particularly when it comes to low income families.

“We are a wealthy nation and can afford to ensure kids get three meals a day, and aren’t left with empty tummies.

“I urge the Government to heed the calls made by the Senate and move towards genuinely ending poverty, in order to do this we need an anti-poverty strategy”.

Motion reads:

*1048 Senator Siewert: To move—That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) after in-depth discussions with over a thousand young people and a national survey of 5,400 young people, the final report of the Australian Child Wellbeing Project found that of young people in years 4, 6 and 8:

(A) between 20 and 25 per cent worry that someone close to them will not have enough to eat,

(B) 10 to 20 per cent sometimes go to bed hungry because there is not enough food at home, and

(C) more than 2 per cent often or always go to bed hungry, and

(ii) the Australian Council of Social Service estimates that 17.7 per cent of children live below the poverty line; and

(b) calls on the Australian Government to adopt a comprehensive anti-poverty strategy, including measures to combat child poverty.