You don’t have to look far past the glossy brochures and government rhetoric to see that this budget does very little for homeless, vulnerable and socially isolated Tasmanians. Those that live week-to-week and often don’t know if there’s a bed for them or a meal at the end of the day.
There’s nothing to get excited about if you are:
- Trapped in the private rental market
- On the housing waiting list
- On the hospital waiting list
- Trying to find a GP
- Trying to see a dentist
- Need additional support for your children at school or learning from home
The challenge of properly funding community services over the long-term remains. As I pointed out in parliament today, Community service organisations play a crucial role keeping people safe, supporting people through hardship, and ultimately helping communities thrive.
Organisations like St Vincent de Paul, the Salvation Army, City Mission, Loaves and Fishers and many more are stretched beyond their limits. They have more and more people seeking help who are crumbling under the cost of living pressures. They tell me that their emergency food reserves are exhausted, blankets and clothing stocks are running low and workers and volunteers are at their wits end. There’s not much in the budget for these groups.
I accept that budgets are about priorities. There is no magic pudding, so the government has to put its money – our money – where it can do the most good for the most people.
I don’t see this budget doing that.