The newly released United Nations report, Fairness for Children, shows Australia ranks 27th out of 35 countries in health equality outcomes among OECD countries and 24th out of 37 in education equality results.
These are deeply worrying results that highlight the pressing need for Australia to tackle inequality and put inclusive growth and social investment at the heart of the national agenda.
Instead the Turnbull Government’s priorities are to cut funding for health and education and slash family payments to 1.5 million Australian families.
Malcolm Turnbull’s cuts to families will leave some Australian families as much as $5,000 a year worse off.
These cuts will hurt some of our most vulnerable families, only increasing the worrying trend towards higher inequality in Australia.
Last month Federal Labor released a new agenda for tackling inequality in Australia – Growing Together.
Growing Together offers a new agenda that recognises the economic and social benefits of investing in maternal and child health.
Labor’s ideas for the future include
- Improving the coordination and integration of antenatal care and support;
- Strengthening continuity of care in maternal and child health;
- Placing child and maternal health services in alternative settings;
- Supporting new parents, particularly fathers, to spend more time with their babies in the critical early months of life.
Labor has also released the Your Child. Our Future plan for Australia’s education system. The plan is designed to reverse the decline in schools performance to ensure Australian students leave school with the skills they need for the jobs of the future.
Labor’s Your Child. Our Future policy sets ambitious targets – including boosting Year 12 completion, ensuring STEM teachers in secondary schools have a relevant qualification, and returning Australia to the top five countries in reading, maths and science.
Labor’s plan will reverse the Turnbull Government’s cuts and invest in the initiatives we know will make a real difference in classrooms, including:
- Needs-based funding for every student in every school;
- Improving teaching expertise in STEM subjects;
- Ensuring all Australian students can learn coding
- Strengthening teaching quality;
- Improving literacy and numeracy;
- Skilling students for the future; and
- More support for students with disability
These policies will help build the capacity of the next generation of Australians. They are all part of Labor’s agenda for tackling inequality.
You can download a copy of Growing Together at www.alp.org.au/growing_together
THE HON JENNY MACKLIN MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR FAMILIES & PAYMENTS
SHADOW MINISTER FOR DISABILITY REFORM
MEMBER FOR JAGAJAGA
CATHERINE KING MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR HEALTH
MEMBER FOR BALLARAT
THE HON KATE ELLIS MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR EDUCATION
MEMBER FOR ADELAIDE