Family, Ageing, Community & Disability Services

We are committed to delivering a guaranteed adequate income to all Australians, so as to assure people have appropriate support. Accessible social services, community resources and income support are essential for ensuring everybody has access to quality health care, housing, employment, education and training. The Greens are committed to increasing Newstart Allowance and raising all income support payments to better reflect the cost of living.

The community and not-for-profit sector plays an important role in our society and Government needs to commit funding and support accordingly.

People who experience disability, and their families and carers deserve access to life-long support and services that meet their individual circumstances. They should have the opportunity to actively participate in planning and delivery of policies, services and supports in areas such as education, health, housing, mobility, employment and social engagement. The Greens are actively working to ensure all Australians have independence, self-determination and choice in their lives.

media-releases

Greens will oppose Truancy Bill in Senate

27 Aug 2008

The Australian Greens today responded the Rudd Government's bill to allow welfare payments being cut, by vowing to oppose the passage of the legislation in the Senate.

"It is telling that the first piece of legislation Julia Gillard has introduced to enact the promised ‘education revolution' in our schools is a punitive and populist measure that targets the families of disadvantaged children - and is likely to make their lives all the harder," said Senator Siewert today.

The Australian Greens today responded the Rudd Government's bill to allow welfare payments being cut, by vowing to oppose the passage of the legislation in the Senate.

"It is telling that the first piece of legislation Julia Gillard has introduced to enact the promised ‘education revolution' in our schools is a punitive and populist measure that targets the families of disadvantaged children - and is likely to make their lives all the harder," said Senator Siewert today.

video

Truancy & Welfare Quarantining 2

27 Aug 2008

Senator Siewert delivers a speech in Parliament about the Government's proposed truancy welfare quarantining legislation.

Part 2 of 2

Senator Siewert delivers a speech in Parliament about the Government's proposed truancy welfare quarantining legislation.

Part 2 of 2

video

Truancy & Welfare Quarantining 1

27 Aug 2008

Senator Siewert delivers a speech in Parliament about the Government's proposed truancy welfare quarantining legislation.

Part 1 of 2

Senator Siewert delivers a speech in Parliament about the Government's proposed truancy welfare quarantining legislation.

Part 1 of 2

media-releases

Greens ‘New Century’ Australia Senate Agenda

25 Aug 2008

The Australian Greens today outlined their vision for Australia in the new century ahead of the opening of the Balance-of-Power Senate.

Australian Greens Leader, Senator Bob Brown, said a record 1.17 million people voted Greens at the last election, and the five Greens Senators were ready to work constructively with all parties to respond to the challenges of the new century.

"Pollution, poverty, discrimination and the destruction of Australia's forests and precious environments are the legacy of the last century and decades of greed and inaction."

"The Greens' role, beginning with this new Parliament, is to begin delivering an Australia that was cleaner, fairer and saner."

In the new Senate, the Rudd government will need seven extra votes from either the Greens, the two independent Senators, or the Coalition, for legislation to pass.

Senator Brown said the immediate priority for the Greens was to put discussion of human values that respected the environment at the centre of Australian politics - especially policies that would deliver immediate planet-saving action on reversing climate change and protecting forests, and those which created a more caring, giving, peaceful and dignified Australian society.

"The Greens are about re-creating Australia for the new century, street by street, community by community, city by city."

Overview of Greens' policy Agenda for New Senate

A sustainable Australian economy, based on building zero-emissions infrastructure - The Greens will continue to champion a meaningful Emissions Trading Scheme, as one tool of many, for tackling Climate Change.

Save the Coorong Senate Inquiry - Senator Sarah Hanson-Young and the Greens will move for an immediate Senate inquiry to save the Coorong and lower Murray River, as part of action for a thorough legislative overhaul of the governance and management of the entire Murray-Darling system.

Protecting native forests by ending wood-chipping of old-growth forests - this measure alone could reduce Australia's greenhouse gas emissions by more than ten per cent, according to Australian Greenhouse Office data.

Senator Christine Milne's New renewable energy gross Feed-in laws - Householders, farmers and industry will be encouraged to convert to renewable energy and also make money from the energy they sell to the electricity grid. Thousands of jobs can be created by rolling out roof-top solar panels, solar thermal power stations, wind turbines as well as other measures.

Senator Rachel Siewert's amendment to restore the Racial Discrimination Act - removing the exemption the Howard Government gave itself when it intervened in the Northern Territory Aboriginal communities.

Promote a discrimination-free Australian society, including removal of discrimination on the basis of sexuality from all statutes, including the Australian Marriage Act.

Increase the quality of life for Australia's 1.2m. pensioners by immediately increasing pensions by at least $30 per week.

Fair parental leave - promote a more family-friendly Australia by encouraging the adoption of a minimum 16 months' maternity and paternity leave.

No radioactive dump in remote Aboriginal communities - Senator Scott Ludlam and the Greens will help Labor keep its election promise of repealing the Commonwealth Radioactive Waste Management Act 2005.

More overseas aid to alleviate poverty and injustice - the Greens will argue for a significant increase in Australia's overseas aid, above the current 0.32% of GDP (2008/09 Budget).

Dignified life and death - Senator Bob Brown's Death with Dignity legislation will return the right of the elected territory assemblies in Darwin and Canberra to legislate for death with dignity for those suffering from terminal illness.

Global political, religious and human rights guaranteed - The Greens will argue at every turn for a stronger international stance by Australia to promote improvements in human rights, including support for the democracy movement in China.

Clear food labelling - The Greens will campaign for excellence in food labelling. The current laws allow confusing and too often misleading labelling. Food sold in Australia should be clearly labelled for its country of origin, its genetically modified status, its nano-particle content and its allergen content.

Sustainable communities - Shifting a portion of infrastructure funding to support sustainable communities including fast, efficient mass transit and affordable housing.

Addressing unfinished business for Indigenous Australians - Amending and re-introducing the Australian Democrat's Stolen Generation Compensation Bill.

Re-introduce fairness into Australia's building sites - introducing a Bill to
Abolish the Australia Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) and repeal the Building and Construction Industry Improvement Act

For more information: Russell Kelly 0438376082

The Australian Greens today outlined their vision for Australia in the new century ahead of the opening of the Balance-of-Power Senate.

Australian Greens Leader, Senator Bob Brown, said a record 1.17 million people voted Greens at the last election, and the five Greens Senators were ready to work constructively with all parties to respond to the challenges of the new century.

"Pollution, poverty, discrimination and the destruction of Australia's forests and precious environments are the legacy of the last century and decades of greed and inaction."

"The Greens' role, beginning with this new Parliament, is to begin delivering an Australia that was cleaner, fairer and saner."

In the new Senate, the Rudd government will need seven extra votes from either the Greens, the two independent Senators, or the Coalition, for legislation to pass.

Senator Brown said the immediate priority for the Greens was to put discussion of human values that respected the environment at the centre of Australian politics - especially policies that would deliver immediate planet-saving action on reversing climate change and protecting forests, and those which created a more caring, giving, peaceful and dignified Australian society.

"The Greens are about re-creating Australia for the new century, street by street, community by community, city by city."

Overview of Greens' policy Agenda for New Senate

A sustainable Australian economy, based on building zero-emissions infrastructure - The Greens will continue to champion a meaningful Emissions Trading Scheme, as one tool of many, for tackling Climate Change.

Save the Coorong Senate Inquiry - Senator Sarah Hanson-Young and the Greens will move for an immediate Senate inquiry to save the Coorong and lower Murray River, as part of action for a thorough legislative overhaul of the governance and management of the entire Murray-Darling system.

Protecting native forests by ending wood-chipping of old-growth forests - this measure alone could reduce Australia's greenhouse gas emissions by more than ten per cent, according to Australian Greenhouse Office data.

Senator Christine Milne's New renewable energy gross Feed-in laws - Householders, farmers and industry will be encouraged to convert to renewable energy and also make money from the energy they sell to the electricity grid. Thousands of jobs can be created by rolling out roof-top solar panels, solar thermal power stations, wind turbines as well as other measures.

Senator Rachel Siewert's amendment to restore the Racial Discrimination Act - removing the exemption the Howard Government gave itself when it intervened in the Northern Territory Aboriginal communities.

Promote a discrimination-free Australian society, including removal of discrimination on the basis of sexuality from all statutes, including the Australian Marriage Act.

Increase the quality of life for Australia's 1.2m. pensioners by immediately increasing pensions by at least $30 per week.

Fair parental leave - promote a more family-friendly Australia by encouraging the adoption of a minimum 16 months' maternity and paternity leave.

No radioactive dump in remote Aboriginal communities - Senator Scott Ludlam and the Greens will help Labor keep its election promise of repealing the Commonwealth Radioactive Waste Management Act 2005.

More overseas aid to alleviate poverty and injustice - the Greens will argue for a significant increase in Australia's overseas aid, above the current 0.32% of GDP (2008/09 Budget).

Dignified life and death - Senator Bob Brown's Death with Dignity legislation will return the right of the elected territory assemblies in Darwin and Canberra to legislate for death with dignity for those suffering from terminal illness.

Global political, religious and human rights guaranteed - The Greens will argue at every turn for a stronger international stance by Australia to promote improvements in human rights, including support for the democracy movement in China.

Clear food labelling - The Greens will campaign for excellence in food labelling. The current laws allow confusing and too often misleading labelling. Food sold in Australia should be clearly labelled for its country of origin, its genetically modified status, its nano-particle content and its allergen content.

Sustainable communities - Shifting a portion of infrastructure funding to support sustainable communities including fast, efficient mass transit and affordable housing.

Addressing unfinished business for Indigenous Australians - Amending and re-introducing the Australian Democrat's Stolen Generation Compensation Bill.

Re-introduce fairness into Australia's building sites - introducing a Bill to
Abolish the Australia Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) and repeal the Building and Construction Industry Improvement Act

For more information: Russell Kelly 0438376082

media-releases

School truancy measures are punitive, not progressive: Greens

25 Aug 2008

The Australian Greens today condemned the Federal Government's plan to suspend the welfare payments of families of children who fail to attend school.

"Where is the evidence base that this punitive approach will actually work?" asked Senator Rachel Siewert today.

The Australian Greens today condemned the Federal Government's plan to suspend the welfare payments of families of children who fail to attend school.

"Where is the evidence base that this punitive approach will actually work?" asked Senator Rachel Siewert today.

media-releases

Pension increase can't wait until next March

11 Aug 2008

"The Greens are calling for a boost to the maximum single pension rate of $30 per week to be enacted immediately," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

"It is high time the Rudd Government to put in place measures that ensure a reasonable standard of living for older Australians," she said.

"The Greens are calling for a boost to the maximum single pension rate of $30 per week to be enacted immediately," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

"It is high time the Rudd Government to put in place measures that ensure a reasonable standard of living for older Australians," she said.

media-releases

Sensible fix can transform Special Disability Trusts

29 Jul 2008

The Senate Inquiry into the provisions of Special Disability Trusts heard today that the trusts were a good idea which had not been taken up because the provisions in the legislation were too restrictive.

The Senate Inquiry into the provisions of Special Disability Trusts heard today that the trusts were a good idea which had not been taken up because the provisions in the legislation were too restrictive.

media-releases

Welfare card a white elephant - Greens

23 Jul 2008

Claims by Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin that the announcement today of an electronic access card for quarantined welfare payments will strengthen community safety and the protection of children are overblown according to the Australian Greens.

Claims by Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin that the announcement today of an electronic access card for quarantined welfare payments will strengthen community safety and the protection of children are overblown according to the Australian Greens.

media-releases

Cannington trial - wrong-headed: Greens

18 Jul 2008

The punitive Cannington welfare trial, which involves suspending welfare payments to parents whose children play truant, and quarantining the income of those deemed 'at risk', is an old fashioned and wrong-headed approach to dealing with a serious problem according to the Australian Greens.

The punitive Cannington welfare trial, which involves suspending welfare payments to parents whose children play truant, and quarantining the income of those deemed 'at risk', is an old fashioned and wrong-headed approach to dealing with a serious problem according to the Australian Greens.

media-releases

Support for charities only goes so far

25 Jun 2008

"Despite all their rhetoric about caring for charitable and community service organisations, today the major parties rejected a simple Australian Greens amendment to fix the yawning gap in wages and conditions," said Senator Rachel Siewert.

"Despite all their rhetoric about caring for charitable and community service organisations, today the major parties rejected a simple Australian Greens amendment to fix the yawning gap in wages and conditions," said Senator Rachel Siewert.

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