Careful Budget for tough times – but more needed for those doing it toughest
The Brotherhood of St. Laurence (BSL) welcomes and acknowledges positive measures in Labor’s 2022 federal Budget, especially for the early years, women, housing, skills, climate, community services, and older people across Australia.
“This Budget recognises the need to improve the services and supports which many in the community rely on and the certainty of the revenue needed to deliver them. It signals a rewiring of investment into building the confidence and capability of Australian communities. The Housing Accord, NDIS Review, Full Employment White Paper and forthcoming Early Years Strategy are golden opportunities to improve our service systems,” said Travers McLeod, Executive Director of the Brotherhood of St. Laurence.
“The Wellbeing Statement, which elevates a focus on measuring what matters, not just financial production and consumption, is a particularly positive initiative. We welcome a larger national conversation about how we can do this and build better pathways for economic and social participation.”
“Sadly, however, there was not enough in the Budget to address the pressures facing households that are experiencing poverty and disadvantage right now. This needs to be a much bigger national priority.”
“The reality is life will become much tougher for many more people over the coming months and years. There will be greater pressure on the services provided by BSL right across the life course, and much more attention must be paid to solving these issues in the May 2023 Budget.”
“Our recent research report, , revealed the scale of energy stress in Australia, with nearly 1 in 4 households experiencing energy stress in 2020. The projected increases in energy prices, unemployment and inflation in the Budget betray a bleak and difficult period ahead.”
“If we’re serious about lifting people out of poverty and ensuring the doors of opportunity are open to everyone, we will need a stronger safety net. Right now, too many households in Australia are on the edge financially. We need to remove the traps keeping children and adults in persistent disadvantage. The longer we wait, the harder it will be for them to catch up.”
The Brotherhood of St. Laurence (BSL) is a social justice organisation working to prevent and alleviate poverty across Australia.
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