I believe our economy should serve its people. Labor will always work for an economy that is both strong and fair. We can deliver growth, efficiency and social justice when we provide quality education and training, support industries to provide jobs that are fairly paid and stable, and recognise the distinct needs of regional Australia, all while embracing the potential of technology and innovation. Australia is at its best when the benefits of economic growth are there for all to share.
Earlier this year the New South Wales Liberal government faced a choice. It needed to purchase new trains, a contract that would be worth billions of dollars and hundreds of jobs. The Baird government had the option in that process to choose a consortium that promised to manufacture the cars in a new facility in the Illawarra—
Senator for NSW Jenny McAllister and Labor candidate Damian Wood have met with staff at Port Macquarie TAFE today to hear about the impact of the Abbott-Turnbull Government’s cuts to skills and training. The Liberals have cut $2.5 billion from skills and training over the past two years, including a $1 billion cut to apprentice programs and apprenticeship support.
Regional TAFEs like Port Macquarie have fewer students and less money, figures show.
McAllister and Ketter Media Release: A Husband is Not a Retirement Plan - Report from the Economic Security for Women in Retirement Inquiry
The Senate Inquiry into the Economic Security of Women in Retirement has found that if action is not taken now, women currently aged 25-29 will still face a less secure retirement than men of the same age when they retire in 2055. The Inquiry’s final report has been released today and provides 19 recommendations that, if implemented, would narrow the gap between men and women’s retirement security.
Wong and McAllister Media Release: Turnbull Chaos - No Plan for Schools, Hospitals or The Federation
Senior officials confirmed today that chaos and division at the heart of the Turnbull Government sabotaged outcomes from the 1 April COAG meeting and has driven a stake through the heart of Federation reform. Officials from the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and the Treasury gave evidence that Malcolm Turnbull had been contemplating a plan for double taxation for months before the meeting – but didn’t bother to tell the states and territories, or even his own department.
We have heard this afternoon that there are some senators in this chamber who are concerned about tobacco taxes taking money out of people's pockets. On the Labor side, we are more concerned about tobacco taking years off people's lives. We heard a quite moving testimony from Senator Bilyk about the very personal cost that came about from tobacco-related disease.
The Prime Minister was asked yesterday if he had a recommendation for young people who could not afford to buy a home. His response had 351 words but not a single recommendation. This, of course, is just one recommendation less than Mr Hockey, who once unhelpfully suggested that young people should just get a better job -
I rise to address Australia's rental crisis. 2.7 million Australian households rent. They are the forgotten face of Australia's housing affordability crisis. They are forgotten in our national conversation and, unhappily, they are forgotten by the Turnbull government.
I spoke at Labor’s National Conference about tax and tax transparency: If people and companies want to use contrived structures to avoid tax, they should be prepared to publicly defend their decisions.
Australia is a relatively low taxing nation, and over the last ten years, Commonwealth revenue as a share of GDP has fallen significantly. Labor in government kept tax revenues below the levels inherited from John Howard, and made tough choices to fund new promises. However, the community has high expectations of the services they'll receive from government, and the call on our budget for services like health care is expected to rise.
I spoke about this issue at last weekend's NSW ALP State Conference, arguing that we need an honest conversation with our community about the services they want, and their willingness to pay for them.