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Land of the Fair Go

Today the Australian Council of Social Services ACOSS released its Federal Election statement "Towards a Fairer Australia".

The question it poses is simple - if Australia as a nation can't find it in its heart to help out the disadvantaged and ensure a fair go for all Australians during the economic ‘good times', then can we really continue to think of this country as the land of the fair go?

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Housing crisis hits hard

Rachel Siewert 17 Sep 2007

"The Government must act now to halt Australia's housing crisis," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

"In the past decade the median house price in Australia has increased from four times average incomes to six to seven times average incomes."

"Australia needs a national affordable housing plan, and it has to happen now."

"We are supposedly in economic boom times, yet many Australians can not afford to buy a home or even rent one. Young Australians are facing the prospect of never owing their own homes," she said.

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Macquarie Marshes water theft shows Commonwealth not ready to take over water management

"The failure of the Howard Government to deliver on its responsibilities to protect Ramsar wetlands at Macquarie Marshes highlights its lack of capacity to take over the nation's water resources," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

"How can the Commonwealth manage the whole of the Murray Darling Basin if they are unable to manage getting their environmental water from the dam to the marshes?"

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Aboriginal health and housing: under-funded and misdirected

The Government has missed the mark on Aboriginal health and housing according to the Greens.
"This budget goes no where near far enough to address the 17 year life expectancy age gap between Aboriginal and non Aboriginal Australians," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.
"Most of the new funding measures appear to be directed to regional and remote communities. The majority of Aboriginal Australians live in urban communities, but their life expectancy is just as bad as those in remote communities."

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Australians want services not tax cuts from Budget

"To create a fairer Australia the Treasure should be putting better government services and initiatives ahead of tax cuts in this year's budget" said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

Senator Siewert welcomed the release today of ACOSS's A Fairer Australia: Recommendations for the Federal Budget 2007-08

"The polls show that ordinary Australians want to see the government invest in a fairer future," said Senator Siewert.

"Now more than ever we need to be investing the benefits of out strong economy in building a better future for all Australians"

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Housing Affordability Crisis

Rachel Siewert 28 Mar 2007

I rise in support of this urgency motion. The Australian Greens have been concerned about access to affordable housing for a considerable period of time. When you look at some of the details, you see that our concern is absolutely justified, as is the concern of the community. In the past decade the median house price in Australia has increased from four times average incomes to six to seven times average incomes.

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Airport developments above the law

The Airports Amendment Bill 2006 is essentially about maintaining the status quo as far as some of our most important airports are concerned. Airports are amongst the most important assets in our cities and regional centres. The people who planned them recognised that, as they are a strategic and hazardous land use, they need to be surrounded by broad buffer zones to protect people in adjacent areas.

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Affordable housing campaign hits the mark

Rachel Siewert 27 Mar 2007

"First home buyers have been left behind by Government subsidies that see 80% of the $24 billion directly and indirectly spent on housing going to tax breaks for speculators, developers and investors," said Senator Siewert today.

"This has helped pump up the housing bubble, making buying your own home too expensive for many Australian families."

Greens Housing spokesperson Senator Rachel Siewert congratulated the organisers of the 'Australians for Affordable Housing' campaign launch this morning.

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Land carve up won't deliver Aboriginal home ownership

"Mal Brough's plan to overturn Aboriginal community ownership of their land is not about private home ownership on remote communities. It is just a foot in the door strategy to overturn community land tenure," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

"This is not the way to tackle the Aboriginal housing crisis."

"For a government that promotes itself on its economic credentials, this plan is an embarrassment. The Minister has failed home economics 101. Private home ownership is not the economic panacea, nor is it realistic," said Senator Siewert.

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