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Thursday, 31 October 1996
Page: 4837

Motion (by Senator Bourne)—as amended by leave—agreed to:

That the Senate—

(a)   notes that:

   (i)   the United Nations has declared 1996 to be the International Year for the Eradication of Poverty,

   (ii)   in spite of significant economic progress in many countries over the past 50 years, more than one billion people continue to live in absolute poverty,

   (iii)   in Australia, almost 2 million people, or approximately 10 per cent of the population, have incomes below the Henderson poverty line, and

   (iv)   most members of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development have reduced their aid to the poorer countries of the world in recent times, even though their need for assistance has increased; and

(b)   calls on the Government to undertake specific measures in the 1997-98 Budget to:

   (i)   promote employment in, and increase assistance to, the poorest people within Australia, and

   (ii)   sharpen the humanitarian focus of Australia's overseas aid program.