Tag Archives: parliament

Hello, my name is….

Who are the major national parties, and what have they done for you?

THE AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY

– Abolished work choices
– Increased hospital funding by 50 per cent
– More help for pensioners
– Decisive action during the GFC
– Getting the budget back in black three years early
– Establishing a single national school curriculum
– Investing in new cancer research and treatment
– 1000 new nurse training places and 1300 new GPs
– Building Trade Training Centres in high schools
– Investment in renewable energy and infrastructure
– Tax cuts in the last three budgets
– Building the NBN
– Creating 235 000 new training places.

THE LIBERAL PARTY

– Eliminated more than $96 billion of government debt
– Restored Australia’s AAA credit rating
– Delivered jobs
– Higher wages
– Higher pensions
– Funding for health, education, defence and transport
– Productive workplaces

AUSTRALIAN GREENS

– 10,000 local green jobs in the economic stimulus package
– Fuel efficiency incentives for luxury cars
– An extra $30 a week for pensioner
– Inclusion of Exclusive Brethren businesses in the Fair Work law
– $50 million for public health
– Protection of youth allowance payments for gap year students
– Continued Medicare funded dental treatments for patients with chronic illness
– Protection for thousands of wind and solar jobs by fixing the renewable energy target
– Negotiating into the economic stimulus package a $400 million into a Local Jobs package

AUSTRALIAN NATIONALS

– Secured Parliament’s support for a review of foreign investment in agriculture and water assets
– Established a Senate inquiry into the Water Act
– Established a dams taskforce to develop proposals for new investment in dams
– Introduced a Private Member’s Bill to minimise the risk of fire blight and other pests and diseases to the Australian apple industry
– Led the fight to restore the live cattle export trade to Indonesian abattoirs with acceptable welfare standards
– Led the fight to restore Independent Youth Allowance eligibility to students in regional areas
– Introduced legislation to provide more control to indigenous communities on the regulation of Wild Rivers

Gay Marriage

What’s the debate?

The current marriage act in Australia states that marriage is to be between a man and a woman. Same-sex couples in Australia are recognised as defacto, having the same rights as heterosexual defacto couples. Despite growing public support and lobbying by various marriage equality groups, same-sex couples are not allowed to marry in any of the states or territories in Australia.
The following is a timeline outlining the changes to the marriage act and developments in marriage equality;

Marriage Amendment Bill (2004) – the then Federal Attorney-General Philip Ruddock introduced the Marriage Amendment Bill 2004 which incorporated the common law definition of marriage (marriage between a man and a woman only). In June 2004, the bill passed the House of Representatives and on 13 August 2004, the Senate passed the amendment 38 votes to 6. This amendment also stated that same-sex couples who married overseas would not have their marriage recognised in Australia.

Same-Sex Marriages Bill (2006) – Senator Natasha Stott Despoja introduced a private member’s bill that aimed to reverse the changes made to the Marriage Act in 2004. The bill stalled and is still on the Parliament’s current bill list.

Same-Sex Marriages Bill (2008 – Tasmania) – Greens MP Nick McKim introduced the Same-Sex Marriage Bill 2008 into Tasmania’s House of Assembly in July 2008.McKim introduced a similar bill to the House in April 2005.Neither bill has progressed to a Second Reading.

Marriage Equality Amendment Bill (2009) – Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young introduced the Marriage Equality Amendment Bill 2009 which would legislate same-sex marriage. The bill would amend the Marriage Act 1961, removing all discrimination based on sexuality and gender, and allowing marriage regardless sexuality, gender or sex. The bill was rejected by the Senate on 25 February 2010.

2011 Conscience Vote – the ALP has voted in favour of same-sex marriage. Despite Julia Gillard personally opposing it, she has allowed members of the ALP to take a conscience vote (each member could vote based on their own decisions, not the party’s). This conscience vote saw the ALP voting in favour of same-sex marriage, with the conscience vote being carried 208 votes to 184.

Contemporary Politics for Dummies

Confused by the spin placed on all political announcements?
Do you understand what the carbon tax is? What is Gonski and do you give one?

Contemporary Politics for Dummies will give the straight up, unbiased facts about what a policy is, what it means for you and what each party has to say about it.

This campaign is working to keep the public informed and updated on the political decisions that affect the community. This is a campaign that provides the community with the basic, unbiased facts of major political decisions and the information about how, why these decisions are made and the approach of the major political parties. This campaign will give the issues context by providing relevant historical material (e.g. newspaper articles, previous policies, documentation, interviews, quotes from politicians) and furthermore, will separate the facts from the spin.

Join up and find out how what goes down in Canberra will impact on you.