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BLOCKED VACCINE SHIPMENT MAKES THE CASE FOR DOMESTIC PRODUCTION

The Greens say that halted shipments of Astra Zeneca vaccines from Europe show the risks of relying on international supply chains to inoculate Australians, extending their call for the government to establish a publicly-owned vaccine production centre.

News of a quarter of a million doses due for Australia being blocked has exposed the risks caused by the privatisation and winding down of Australia’s domestic vaccine production capabilities over decades.

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Greens renew call for Drug Law Reform

Rachel Siewert 4 Mar 2021

The Australian Laywer’s Alliance “Doing More Harm Than Good: The need for a health-focused approach to drug use” report clearly shows that a national approach to harm minimisation is long overdue.  
 
"The legal and medical sectors have been saying for decades that treating drug use as a criminal matter, rather than a health issue does not work", Australian Greens Health spokesperson Senator Rachel Siewert said today. 
 

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Aged Care work must start today 

The Greens say that the Aged Care system is fundamentally broken and there needs to be a sense of urgency in fixing it.
 
"The Royal Commissioners set out a five year process and the work needs to start today", Senator Rachel Siewert said. 
 
"This reform needs to be underpinned by a new aged care act based on a human rights approach. 
 
"For too long, aged care has been put in the too hard basket. The Royal Commission Report clearly shows that years of tinkering around the edges has fundamentally failed older Australians. 
 

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Greens welcome Senate support for increase to JobSeeker and referral of bill to inquiry 

"Yesterday the Senate supported my motion calling on the Government to immediately revise its JobSeeker announcement and urgently increase the Jobseeker Payment to be above the poverty line", Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert said. 
 
“In supporting my motion the Senate has agreed that the Government's proposed $3.57 a day increase to JobSeeker is not enough. 
 
“I strongly urge Senators to support amendments to the bill in the Senate to increase the rate.
 

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‘DobSeeker’ hotline is an abuse of power 

The Greens say that the Government’s reporting line dubbed the ‘DobSeeker’ is an abuse of power that will hurt the most vulnerable in our community. 

“This is all part of the sick obsession this Government has with blaming and demonising people for not having a job in the midst of a recession and a pandemic. 

“The Job Provider system (Jobactive) is already rife with bullying, harassment, of people being ignored or treated very poorly by their job providers and now the Government is empowering employers with the means to intimidate and bully Jobseekers.

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$25 a week is a cruel joke

Today is an extremely distressing day for the 1.5 million people on the JobSeeker and Youth Allowance payments who have now had confirmation that the Morrison Government has made the cruel decision to condemn them to poverty. 
 
$44 a day is not enough to live on. This will mean people going without meals, without medication, without the funds to pay for heating or cooling.
 
This should not be happening in a country as wealthy as Australia.
 
This is an appalling slap in the face for all those people trying to survive on Jobseeker.
 

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We need a new approach to quarantine

Rachel Siewert 18 Feb 2021

The Greens say quarantine facilities need to be established out of cities and that facilities must be publicly funded and run. 

“Our hotel quarantine system needs to be watertight. The UK, South Africa, Brazil variants are becoming the dominant variants in other parts of the world and we must keep these from getting out into our community”, Greens spokesperson on Health Senator Rachel Siewert said

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Mr Morrison must stop playing games with Jobseeker’s lives and announce a permanent increase to Jobseeker

The Greens say a so-called employment insurance scheme is an appalling idea and that Mr Morrison is being cruel to people on the Jobseeker payment, drip feeding potential plans for the JobSeeker payment through media leaks.

“This so-called insurance scheme would make an already appalling system worse, further entrenching poverty and homelessness”, Greens spokesperson on Family and Community Services Senator Rachel Siewert said. 

“This concept is based on the assumption that has been disproven time and again, that poverty is an incentive to finding work. 

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