Chair of Catholic Social Services Australia, Francis Sullivan, said that while the new government faces huge challenges, at the top of the list should be a focus on the more than three million Australians that live on or below the poverty line.
“With the election of Anthony Albanese as PM, the millions of Australians that understand what it is like to struggle, day in day out, to put food on the table, to make sure their kids get a good education, to live safely in a house they can call a home now have a national leader with the very same lived experiences,” Mr Sullivan said.
“Prime Minister Albanese comes to the job of leading the country, not down a path signposted by privilege and entitlement but with an understanding and a full appreciation of the opportunities and responsibilities a fair, just and compassionate government can offer all its citizens.”
Mr Sullivan added the new government should herald the start of a new beginning for “the aged and infirmed, the single mothers, the poor and isolated, the underpaid and the over-worked, the disabled and the dispossessed”.
Caritas Australia has also welcomed the Federal election result and Labor’s stated commitment to foreign aid and the Uluru Statement from the Heart.
“It is heartening for the whole sector to see Labor’s commitment to increase aid spending and focus on key areas like gender issues that will really make a difference,” said Caritas Australia’s CEO, Kirsty Robertson.
“Over recent years the aid budget has been steadily reducing. Unfortunately, this has happened exactly when foreign aid has most been needed to fight the effects of COVID-19, conflict and instability.
“Labor’s commitment to increase aid spending over the next few years, particularly in our region, will have a positive impact on communities who are in sore need of our support. Our partners are especially concerned about the impacts of climate change so it is good to see that Labor has listened to this and prioritised climate change in the aid budget.”
In May, Labor committed to spending an additional $525 million over four years in the Pacific and Timor-Leste across health, education, climate change and economic growth.
In his victory speech, Prime Minister Albanese reinforced Labor’s commitment to the Uluru Statement from the Heart, a petition by First Australian leaders to change the constitution of Australia to improve the representation of Indigenous Australians and set up a process of truth-telling on national history.Jump to next article