Support for ‘Uluru Statement from the Heart’ re-affirmed
Annerley Labor has formally re-iterated its support for the ‘full implementation’ of the Uluru Statement from the Heart, which encompasses the commitment to a constitutionally enshrined voice to our national parliament and a ‘Makarrata’ Commission.
Members have already been very active in campaigning for the ‘Yes’ vote in the upcoming referendum on establishing the Voice to Parliament, by helping with two local community BBQs to talk to people about its importance . Another public event, this time a ‘town hall’ meeting in Annerley on 18 April with Labor Senator Pat Dodson, is also being planned and will be supported by members.
The Uluru Statement from the Heart is an invitation to the Australian people from First Nations Australians. It asks all Australians to ‘walk together’ to build a better future by establishing a Voice to Parliament and a ‘Makarrata’ Commission for the purpose of treaty making and truth-telling.
For more information about the Statement, visit https://ulurustatement.org/
Local Policy Conferences held on southside
Party members on Brisbane’s southside have participated recently in two important opportunities to shape the state Platform, with ‘local policy conferences’ held in Tarragindi and South Brisbane.
Local policy conferences are a vital part of the ALP’s policy development process and allows all members to consider and vote on motions and issues. They are uniquely a ‘grassroots’ mechanism that ensures members can collaborate on matters they believe need to be addressed by the Labor Party.
Annerley Labor members sponsored a number of resolutions at both conferences, which included:
o calling on the Queensland government to reverse its recent ‘youth justice’ legislation;
o calling on the Party to ensure a First Nations woman is preselected for a winnable spot on the ALP Queensland Senate ticket for the next federal election;
o supporting a permanent community centre physically located in Annerley;
o removing religious instruction from learning times across all Queensland state schools; and
o improving access to safe, active travel across our local road networks.
The next State ALP Conference, which will debate and update the policy platform, will be held in June in Mackay.
More action needed on rent reform
Annerley Labor is calling for further action on rental reform by calling on the State government to consider several key changes to legislation. With rental costs on the rise across the country and a reported 20% of renters being required to move out of their homes involuntarily, the issue of access to affordable housing for everyone has become a significant public policy issue.
Although there has been significant progress achieved by the state Labor government in regards to residential rental laws, Annerley Labor is highlighting that there are still matters that require urgent attention. In a resolution adopted by the Branch, the following suggestions have been highlighted:
o an immediate review of the Notice to Leave (NTL) mechanism which includes, but not limited to, end of lease evictions.
o the introduction of a cap on rent increases of no more than 75% of state CPI.
o imposing a financial penalty for removing a tenant from a property they have rented by falsely using the grounds of:
o a contract of sale,
o owner occupation,
o significant repairs or renovation,
o planned demolition or redevelopment, or
o change of use of property.
Annerley Labor believes that universal access to safe, secure and affordable housing is a fundamental human right and is essential for family wellbeing, relationships and good health as well as participation in education, employment and our local community.
Changes supported for aged care and superannuation systems
Changes to our superannuation and aged care systems have been called for to ensure there is funding for a ‘dignified retirement and old age for everyone’, rather than being a vehicle for wealth generation and inheritance planning for wealthier Australians.
Annerley Labor has called on the federal government to develop and introduce mechanisms that rebalance the contributions that older, wealthier Australians make towards their health and social care. These include:
o limitations on superannuation tax concessions, at a minimum in line with current suggestions of $3m balances,
o abolition of lifetime caps on means-tested contributions to both residential and home-based aged care (currently $73,000), as recommended by Aged Care Royal Commissioner Briggs,
o a one-time re-assessment of annual caps on means-tested contributions to both residential and home-based aged care (currently $30,000), followed by alignment with average increases in house prices,
o a one-time re-assessment of the home exemption cap in aged care assessment (currently $186,000) to bring it into line with current property prices, followed by alignment with average increases in house prices, and
o abolition of the 30% rebate for private health fund contributions for holders of superannuation balances above the current tax concession level of $1.7m.
In addition, Annerley Labor members, however, have applauded the recent announcement of the Albanese Labor Government to review the current, unsustainable tax concession for superannuation accounts of over $3 million.
Albanese Government given B+
Recently, members gave the Albanese Labor government the equivalent of a ‘B+’ in an interactive online poll that measured its performance to date.
Asked to rate the new government on its first 9 months in office, using a scale of 0-10, members participating in the poll, recorded an average rating of 8.3 – or a ‘B+’.
Like any government, there is always room for improvement, and another similar poll will be conducted later in this year to compare results.
Community Benefit Fund recipient announced
This year’s Catherine Bermingham Community Benefit Fund will be donated to Community Plus after a recent online vote by members.
Named after former Brisbane City Councillor, Catherine Bermingham (pictured), who served from 1997 to 2008, the fund provides money to local, non-profit community organisations that share Annerley Labor’s social and economic justice agenda. Organisations are chosen each year by members, with funds raised by a specially held event or a donations appeal.
Community Plus is active in placemaking, working alongside partners, stakeholders, other agencies and community members to provide valuable support services for people in need in Brisbane’s inner southside.
An online donation appeal to help support Community Plus and its valuable work, will be launched soon.