1 in every 8 living in POVERTY

 

I read a distressing article this past weekend, 1 in 8 of our citizens is living in poverty… of those 600,000 of them are children and 300,000 of those are from single parent families. Those same single parent families can look forward to a decrease in their support pensions of between 55 and 100 dollars per week come January.  What the heck is happening here in the lucky country? I am fairly confident those unable to find a home and/or feed their children would find the expression somewhat hard to ponder. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-10-14/1-in-8-australians-living-in-poverty/4312154?WT.svl=news0

I,  for the record encourage everyone who can work to work, it’s good for the mind and soul and better for the support of families and self… but it’s much easier said than done. The latest employment figures look ok, but can you believe them? When was the last time you had to apply for work, knock on doors, send out dozens of resumes only to be ignored  and then rely  on social services.? I have to say on that score it’s been a while for me, however in my daily pursuits I come across so many people who now have no option but to rely on others for help and assistance. Charities are stretched to breaking point, accommodation is all but impossible to find and what is available is often below standards or way to expensive because the landlord knows he/she doesn’t have to bother because the desperate will take whatever they can find. I know of one family who lives with grease seeping through their carpet from a previous tenants desire to rebuild motors in the lounge-room, no matter how many times they cleaned it, even the professionals have told them it’s a lost cause… holes in doors etc, broken fixtures and fittings and all at above reasonable market rates.  But at least they have a roof… way to many Aussies don’t, they have even come up with terms to describe this, from couch surfing to living rough. When is enough, enough?

Back to the employment figures, working an hour or two a day and you don’t count in those unemployment figures but who can live on that? These people still need support assistance so how can those figures be accurate?

I had a discussion recently with a person who thought a family on $100,000pa was doing it tough, how then do you think a person on $18,000pa is doing it…seriously? It’s time our governments, Federal and State took a big long breath and thought about this for good long minute….why are they cutting jobs, reducing support, cutting education etc… this is the time we need to be increasing all these things not reducing them. I hear the naysayers, where will the money come from, well boys and girls, someone on $25,000pa will spend any extra income they get on food, rent, services. Someone on $100,000 plus may not be able to buy the new Lamborghini  they want or perhaps the world trip  they’ve been dreaming of but they can still consider buying their own home, paying their bills …while families on double that will spend their money on not only mortgages but overseas trips, luxury cars often sending their dollars overseas. What makes more fiscal sense, helping those who will spend their dollars supporting local businesses and services or those taking their dollars overseas… it’s a no brainer… help those who need the help so they in turn will support local markets, businesses and suppliers  which will also increase jobs to service those spending.

At the same time, encourage kids to get a better education, learn a trade, before they close TAFE’s completely…. outsourcing and downgrading the quality of those skills. Education is paramount, not only University, but trades, basic stuff…

I have real difficulty in understanding how subsidising a nanny for $70,000pa is a better option when giving $50 per week to someone looking for work, raising a child etc makes much more sense to me.

It’s not about supporting the lazy… those who say that really haven’t been on the ground talking with the unemployed, sure there will be one or two who will attempt to rort the system, but is it justified to damn the majority in the name of a few? I think not. I see it almost every day, good decent people who want and need work who don’t even get responses from their resume’s, who look for any kind of work, just to feed and clothe their families.

If you agree with me, tell your local politician, write to the local paper, raise the issue in conversation with friends… it’s time we made ourselves the lucky country again…PM Bob Hawke famously once said that no child would live in poverty … well Bob 600,000 of them now do…Be disgusted, be annoyed and tell your pollies to fix this… just ask them how much money they are spending on wars and suggest they redirect that to our poor at home.  There are ways they can make this happen and unless we speak up, no one will do anything, $20M to get a seat on the UN…give me a break, B O’Farrell spending $20M on renaming roads… what the heck, that frivolous stuff can wait till we’ve fed and housed our people. It’s time to speak up… time to get annoyed.

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