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Protect the vulnerable before giving more to the rich.

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Australian Democrats Press Releases

Senator Lyn Allison Parliamentary Leader and Democrats Senator for Victoria

Dated: 29 August 2005 Press Release Number: 426 Portfolio: Work and Family

Related: Taxation, Finance & Corporate Affairs

More from on Taxation, Finance & Corporate Affairs

Protect the vulnerable before giving more to the rich The Australian Democrats welcome the promotion of tax reform by Liberal and Labor MPs but warn against another exclusive tax cut for high income earners.

Democrats Leader, Senator Lyn Allison said after two rounds of tax cuts at the top end, low income earners are still paying the highest effective marginal tax rates. "They are the ones who most need structural reform of the tax system," Senator Allison said.

"The tax free threshold should be raised to at least $10,000 before adding to the take-home pay of workers on five times that amount.

"The compounding effect of the Government's proposals to tighten income support and deregulate industrial relations means those on the lowest incomes, many raising children, will have even less chance of breaking the cycle of poverty.

"Tax cuts for those on low incomes would be the fairest way of providing incentives for people to get into the workforce and would not penalise those for whom work is not a real option."

Senator Allison said Australia had a proud reputation of being an egalitarian society but this Government's economic rationalist ideology ignores fairer solutions that would contribute to productivity.

"For example, increase the tax free threshold to $10,000; get rid of welfare for the wealthy; invest more in schools and R&D and in overcoming barriers to employment and further education including childcare, HECS and TAFE fees the list goes on.

"Efficiency, flexibility and productivity growth don't have to come at the expense of protecting rights or civilised first-world standard. Other countries manage the balance why cant Australia?" concluded Senator Allison.

Printed: 29 August 2005

Authorised by: J. Wood, 711 South Road, Black Forest, SA 5035.