State Budget: Long-term Investment Needed

Today’s State Budget continues the Government’s strong investment and commitment to our most vulnerable Tasmanians and recognises that cost of living pressures are a reality for many in this State.

“We applaud the Government’s investment in cost of living measures, child protection and family violence,” TasCOSS CEO Kym Goodes said.

“Neighbourhood Houses and a range of initiatives continue to address the needs of people in Tasmania living with mental health challenges, homelessness, and intensive support for families and their children” Ms Goodes said.

“These investments demonstrate the Government cares about Tasmanians living on low incomes and struggling through difficult times.

“However, the opportunity presented by the Budget to finally move our state forward has been missed.

“We need to ensure the next generation of Tasmanians will have access to strong opportunities in education, health, community participation and will not live with the same disadvantages as our current generation.

“If there was ever an opportunity for a government to leave a legacy, it is now. But that requires vision, and it requires leadership. It requires being prepared to invest beyond the current election cycle, for outcomes that won’t be seen for many years.

“We know the Government joins us in wanting to build a strong future for Tasmanian people and their communities.

“While investment in the acute end of disadvantage (such as hospital waiting times and child protection) is both needed and welcome, it is also time to do things differently, to tackle the disadvantage by investing for the future in our people, not just our industries and our infrastructure.

“With a $161 million surplus, it is tough for the average Tasmanian looking for a place to call home, or struggling with their literacy so they can’t get a job to understand why the surplus would be celebrated.

“We want to see a government brave enough to invest outside of its election cycle.”