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Land & Water Australia

RURAL AND REGIONAL AFFAIRS AND TRANSPORT

Senator SIEWERT-I have some specific questions around Land and Water Australia. I will obviously have some questions for the agency itself, but Land and Water Australia is engaged in a lot of projects in a number of partnerships. In fact, it is one of the best organisations for developing partnerships.

Senator COLBECK-Absolutely.

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Time to help parents, not punish them

Punitive approaches to managing truancy in the Northern Territory will not solve the problem because they fail to address underlying causes, say the Australian Greens.

"It's time the NT government stop trying to shift the blame and got serious about addressing the problems in schools in the NT, especially in remote Aboriginal communities," said Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert.

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Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) & FSANZ

Community Affairs Committee
Budget Estimates for 2008-09 (Supplementary hearings)

Senator SIEWERT-I have a number of areas I want to talk about, but I want to talk about genetic engineering, GMO and the report Greenpeace has just released, and labelling. The issues that Greenpeace raises in its report are around safety and safety assessment but also labelling. I understand Senator Colbeck wants to talk specifically about labelling as well-is that correct?

Senator COLBECK-Yes.

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Coercive interventions without family support doomed to fail

The Australian Greens today welcomed the launch of ‘Contexts of Child Development - Culture, Policy and Intervention' by the Cooperative Research Centre for Aboriginal Health.

"This work clearly demonstrates why ungrounded coercive approaches like the Northern Territory Intervention and the upcoming welfare truancy trials are doomed to fail from the very start," said Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert.

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Punishing families for truancy destined to fail

"It is clear from Senate question time today that the Government has not thought through the impacts of their planned welfare quarantining trials for truancy," said Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert.

"In the Senate today, the Government admitted that the trial was not limited to the suburb of Cannington, as originally stated. Instead, the trial extends across the Cannington Centrelink district, which includes the suburbs of South Guilford, Burswood, Victoria Park, South Perth, Queens Park, Belmont, Bentley, Rossmoyne, Welshpool and Canning Vale."

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Truancy & Welfare Quarantining

I would like to speak about the legislation that was tabled in the House of Representatives today that deals with truancy. The Minister for Education, Julia Gillard, today tabled a bill in the House of Representatives that gives the government the power to cut off or even cancel welfare payments to parents whose children do not attend school. Julia Gillard is the Minister for Education and the Minister for Social Inclusion.

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Greens will oppose Truancy Bill in Senate

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.

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