Local Member of Federal Parliament Madeleine King said Malcolm Turnbull’s unfair Budget would deliver tax handouts for multinationals and millionaires while hurting local families, workers and pensioners.
“Make no mistake this Budget does not care about everyday people who are doing it tough,” Ms King said.
“It is a Budget that rewards big business and the banks with a $50 billion tax cut, while it cuts school, university and TAFE funding.”
Ms King said the Budget failed to help people struggling with cost of living pressures instead increasing taxes, slashing pension payments and failing to lift the freeze on Medicare rebates.
“Pensioners will be worse off with hits to their budget while workers will pay extra tax. And it is a disgrace that Australia will soon top the list of having the oldest pension age in the developed world, a dubious accolade by any account,” she said.
Ms King said Labor would continue to fight for fairness and would the Government to account for its attacks on families and workers.
People earning $65,000 a year will pay $325 more tax in two years’ time while someone on a million dollars will pay $16,400 less tax this year with the withdrawal of the deficit levy.
SKILLS AND TRAINING
Instead of investing in local jobs and skills, Malcolm Turnbull’s unfair Budget has cut funding to TAFE, vocational education and apprenticeships yet again.
This Budget will cut more than $600 million more from TAFE and vocational education over the next four years, compared to current arrangements.
This comes on top of almost $3 billion in existing cuts to TAFE, skills and training, and a loss of more than 130,000 apprentices since 2013.
The Budget confirms that Malcolm Turnbull will cut $22 billion from schools to pay for a $50 billion big business tax cut.
The $22 billion cut means every Australian school will lose an average of $2.4 million. It’s the equivalent of sacking 22,000 teachers.
Funding to universities will be cut by $3.8 billion, student fees will be hiked by eight per cent and graduates will have to pay back their HECS debt much earlier than before.
The challenges facing young people in Brand going to university are very real and high fees are a real barrier. Increasing fees is making it even harder for students and their families to see university as an option and this government is totally out of touch if it cannot see this.
This Budget fails the jobs test with the forecast unemployment higher, while forecasts for employment growth, wages growth and GDP growth are all lower.
Nothing in this Budget delivers good jobs now at a time when the unemployment rate is at the same as the peak of Global Financial Crisis.
And this Government continues to show its contempt for workers by supporting harsh cuts to penalty rates.
Not only that but cutting funding to Tourism Australia by $35 million makes no sense at all. The sector is an important driver for local jobs and economic development with 750,000 tourists visiting the Rockingham area every year spending money at local businesses which in turn creates local jobs.
This Budget keeps the cruel hits on pensioners including increasing the pension age to 70 meaning Australia will have the oldest pension age in the developed world.
The Government is out of touch if it thinks labourers, brickies, childcare workers, and care assistants will be able to continue working into their old age.
The Government will axe the Energy Supplement to new pensioners, people with disability, carers and Newstart recipients slashing $365 from a single pensioner or $550 from a couple’s annual budget.
And new cuts to Family Tax Benefits will leave thousands of families worse off.
The one-off payment of $75 to pensioners is an insult when they are actually having $365 ripped from them.
The Budget slashes 1,188 jobs from the Department of Human Services in the coming year ensuring that Centrelink processing and phone wait time will continue to explode.
The disastrous decision follows the axing of more 800 workers in last year’s Budget.
Centrelink clients ringing to report their income or clarify their responsibilities are already waiting up to 35 minutes just to have calls answered and some 29 million calls didn’t even get through last year.
This Budget is an insult to people across the Cities of Rockingham and Kwinana who rely on Medicare.
The Government has delayed reversing its unfair cuts to Medicare for three years meaning patients continue to pay more for healthcare.
Failing to drop the freeze on Medicare rebates immediately will impact on many vulnerable patients – including those needing critical oncology treatment, obstetric services, and paediatric treatment.
Patients will have to wait more than 12 months for relief – and will be left waiting more than two years for the freeze on specialist procedures and allied health services to be lifted:
- GP consultations – freeze remains until July 2018
- Specialist consultations – freeze remains until July 2018
- Specialist procedures – freeze remains until July 2019
- Allied health services including psychologists – freeze remains until July 2019.