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A statement of additional ABC cuts

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18 November 2014

The announcement that the Federal Government intends to cut a further $50m from the ABC represents another broken promise and is clearly not in the public interest.

This latest cut is on top of the $9m that was cut in the miserable May Budget, despite the Prime Minister stating unequivocally before the election that there would be no cuts to the ABC or SBS.

Stripping the ABC of this amount fundamentally diminishes Australia’s independent media.

The cuts will have a disproportionate impact in Tasmania, as well as rural and regional Australia, as state-based 7:30 Report editions are facing the axe while the funds ripped from radio also threatens local news and entertainment.

The Communications Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, has said that broadcasting should not be disrupted as the cuts will be made to everything else. In other words there will be less money for variety and development of content, and less funding for training which is an attack on entry level journalists.

What this means for jobs in Tasmania remains to be seen, although it’s fairly obvious some ABC staff are going to be sacked which will be a terrible blow for them and their families.

I call on the Government to reconsider this appalling decision and show some support for public and independent media in Australia.