The Australian Greens said today that Tony Abbott's cruel budget was fuelling a strong backlash in WA, with a new grass-roots campaign to harness this energy as budget measures are debated in Parliament.
Senators Rachel Siewert and Scott Ludlam hosted a ‘Bust the Budget' forum in Perth last night, outlining the threats the budget poses to people across WA, and kicking off a new wave of community campaigning, building on the success of the recent Senate by-election.
"I think 200 people turning out on a Monday night a month after the budget was handed down reflects the level of concern the community has about the Abbott Government's budget. People have very deep concerns about the impacts of these measures, not just on them but on our community" Senator Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens spokesperson on family and community services said today.
"Tony Abbott knows that his budget will affect people across WA, including young jobseekers, students, single parents, older Australians and Aboriginal people. Cuts to income support and health programs, changes to uni fees and changes to pensions and family payments will increase inequality around the state.
"The Government knows people will be forced into poverty and homelessness, and yet they're ignoring the concerns of the community, social services and charities," said Senator Siewert.
"The Abbott Government also wants to dismantle the progress Australia was making toward the clean energy transition, slashing funds for new renewable energy and public transport," Senator Scott Ludlam said today. "The 2014/15 budget is backward-looking and cruel, and the Greens plan to fight it at every level," he said.
"People in WA will not sit by while Tony Abbott makes these cruel budget measures a reality. As the Greens oppose these cuts in Parliament, our campaign in WA will continue to gain strength, with community outreach, door knocks and other events planned in the weeks ahead," Senator Siewert concluded.