Australian Progressives Policies – Overview
The Australian Progressives are boldly addressing fundamental challenges facing Australia that have been ignored by other political parties for decades. Party politics, ideological short-sightedness and the financial influence of vested interests has resulted in the political class catering to those holding the purse strings to the detriment of Australian citizens, thus failing to transform Australia for the new century.
We believe Australia's best days are ahead of us.
Inequality is on the rise in Australia across wealth, education, health, gender and social justice, which is affecting all of us, and damaging our economy and quality of life. It's time we worked together to end it.
Governments have failed to provide critical infrastructure increases for health, education, transport, freight, water and food in our cities and rural communities. It is time for this to change to promote job and business opportunities and improve societal outcomes for all Australians.
Employment opportunities and conditions are under constant attack and pressure from corporations, lobbyists and trade agreements that cater for a select few multinational corporations, big business and lobbyist groups. Small and medium business and Australian agricultural enterprises are under constant pressure and attack by those same entities, yet they are the backbone of our economy and future of Australia.
We, the majority of Australia, must stand united and tall. It's time we worked together. It's time we fight back. It's time our voices were heard.
Progressively tax both individuals and businesses in order to ensure that everyone pays their fair share, and reduce the burden for individuals and businesses on the middle to lower end of the income scale. At the same time end all forms of corporate welfare, tax reduction and tax deductions to reduce economic disadvantage and complexity.
Clamp down on profit shifting strategies and the use of tax havens.
Introduce a Financial Trading Tax on stocks, bonds and currency of 0.1%.
Increase super contributions to 12%, reform contribution taxation so individuals receive a 15% tax discount on their marginal income tax rate, and reintroduce the low earner supplement.
Transition housing out of speculative investment sector; phase out negative gearing; phase in a cap on deductions for current arrangements, put an end to new applications, crack down on foreign investors; eliminate Capital Gains Tax Exemptions; Apply Anti money laundering measures to property.
Reduce the working week from 38 to 32 hours and increase flexibility to permit workers to have a four day working week, without financial loss.
Cap CEO remuneration at 100 times lowest paid employee, with appropriate restrictions to prevent low-paid job outsourcing.
Entry level and Graduate Employment incentives
0.25 to 0.75% company tax break for businesses that employ 10% entry level and graduates as proportion of staff.
Paid Parental Leave & Childcare
Extend leave entitlement to 24 weeks initially (progressively move to 36 then 52 weeks), for both mothers and fathers; increase flexibility to provide gradual return to work. Increase the number of childcare facilities and their affordability.
Foreign trade agreements
Oppose trade agreements like the TPP that take away from the nation's sovereign powers and are heavily weighted to the interests of multinational corporations at the expense of local businesses and jobs.
Introduce broad based Emissions Trading Scheme; restore/increase funding to the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, and the CSIRO as well as reversing the cuts to funding and staff in the CSIRO, and the reestablishing the climate change commission; lock in 100% Renewable energy target by 2036 and 125% by 2060. Target 70% reduction on 2005 emissions levels by 2030.
Great Barrier Reef
Immediately halt developments that threaten the Reef; investigate options to increase protections for the Reef and move to sustainable tourism industry.
Conservation and Biodiversity
Improve protections for biodiversity; transition to sustainable industry practices.
Land & Water (Pro-Rural!)
Introduce greater protections for agricultural lands, waterways, national parks, marine sanctuaries, reefs and fisheries from such things as mining, the use of certain pesticides and more. Introduce a national water management and irrigation system with increased investment in water capture and storage and irrigation infrastructure.
Provide support for climate change mitigation; oppose foreign purchase of agricultural land; provide funding for innovative sustainable agricultural development.
Phase out unconventional (eg coal seam aka CSG) gas, coal and oil mining; require upfront capital for environmental restoration works; phase out / remove fossil fuel subsidies.
Guarantee government-owned and provided Medicare and reverse funding cuts for common procedures. Reform health care sector to improve service delivery costs and focus on preventative health outcomes.
Include Dental procedures in Medicare.
Guarantee Hearing Australia and other asset health services are not privatised.
Build a long term Health Funding model to take Commonwealth-State politics out of the picture and provide long term guaranteed health services for all Australians.
Increase health research funding for age-related health issues to tackle Australia’s ageing population.
Provide funding to increase regional and rural services; add mental health education to school syllabuses; provide increased services to reduce reliance on hospitals.
Pivot from criminal to health focus for addicts and recreational users.
Pharmaceutical benefits scheme
Create a new pharmaceutical production facility to supply “off patent” pharmaceuticals and sell at just above the cost price in order to make the PBS more sustainable and create room to provide new medications to be introduced into the PBS.
First Peoples of Australia
Work with the First Peoples of Australia to write a treaty; review frameworks to improve progress achieving Closing the Gap goals and commit to long term funding initiatives to empower communities to solve their local issues.
Legally define marriage as between two consenting adults; provide protections for religious celebrants against anti-discrimination legislation contrary to religious beliefs.
Advocate for fairness for both women and men wherever there are systemic discriminatory practices, including equal pay, maternity leave, childcare and parental custody.
Support all the recommendations to increase funding and services as outlined in the final report from the Victorian Royal Commission into Domestic Violence.
Nationalise unemployment support services and increase access to jobseeker case managers to empower people to actively contribute to their communities either as paid employees or as volunteers. Improve access to support services such as mental health and subsidised skills training.
Progressive Means testing
Increase payments to social security recipients, remove barriers to eligible support payments; review and remove the inherent disincentives to work in the current payment structures and implement progressive means testing to prevent income loss as wages increase and negate excess effective tax rates.
Increase base pension rate by $100, review indexation to ensure accurate cost of living captured.
Hold a review into asset shifting in order to clamp down on the practice of transferring wealth to gain a social security benefit.
Improve teacher training and remuneration in line with successful Finnish model; review national curriculum to best practice education and focus, removing excessive testing and inappropriate pushing down of the curriculum and homework into early childhood. Work to change conveyor-belt one-size-fits-all paradigms, encourage each child’s agency and interests, support a thirst for knowledge and the teaching of research, mindfulness, sound argument.
Vocational Education and Training
Hold an industry-wide investigation into to Vocational Education and Training industry on rorting of the FEE-HELP system and providing substandard courses; nationalise and properly fund TAFEs; refocus a majority of the funding to TAFE and re-regulate the Vocational Education industry.
Reform student funding to reduce course fees for all tertiary students; reform FEE-HELP so students pay back loans at 1% from $48,000 per year rising to 9% for incomes over $90,000 per year. This is in conjunction with an increase to study allowance and and a semester allowance of $250 to help pay for educational materials.
Support full Gonski needs-based funding reform implementation.
CSIRO and Universities
Reform funding model to increase financial security; increase funding for all research; develop commercialisation expertise to improve returns on investment.
New Industry development
Create a new division in the CSIRO and set up a government Venture Capital fund to seed early stage and emerging growth companies in Australia based on their potential for success. Technical and business support to help ensure success and all returns on investment will help grow the fund for more investment.
Increase public transport, water, power, health and education infrastructure.
Rural Infrastructure package
Return to a full NBN rollout, increase rural/city connectivity through high speed rail, increase the level of health services, education, freight, water, power and transport infrastructure.
Onshore processing; increase intake to 26,000 per year; use Manus/Nauru closure to improve health and transition services; establish point-of-safe-harbour Australian-run refugee settlements in consultation with conflict border nations to improve safety closer to home and seek out a regional asylum seeker agreement.
Strengthen legal protections for whistleblowers.
Federal Corruption Commission
Establish a Commonwealth Independent Commission against Corruption with avenues for legal actions. Include government funded programs, tenders, and entities in receipt of government funding.
100% public funding of elections; equal media access; prohibit corporate donations; real time donations transparency.
Support Royal Commission into financial services as a first step to reforming financial services; increase customer protections; increase funding to ASIC and APRA.