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Family Watch Taskforce.

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23 June 2006


I am pleased to announce today that the Labor Caucus has approved a Family Watch Task Force to examine the financial pressure Australian families are under as a result of Howard Government policies

The Member for Ballarat, Catherine King, will chair the ALP Caucus’ new Family Watch Task Force. Deputy Chair is the Member for Oxley, Bernie Ripoll and other members are Senators Helen Polley and Anne McEwan and Julia Irwin, Jill Hall and Anne Corcoran.

Middle Australia is doing it tough under the policies of the Howard Government with the triple whammy of rising petrol costs, rising interest rates and an attack on wages and conditions, all which are eroding household budgets.

Under the Howard Government medical expenses, child care costs and the family mortgage are now exceeding growth in average household incomes.

The Task Force will examine the pressure Australian Families are under including, the effects of skyrocketing petrol prices, spiralling household debt, and lack of child care accessibility and affordability.

Other rising costs such as health care, the family grocery and telephone bills, and education and training will also be examined.

The Family Watch Task Force will travel widely to gather evidence, with a particular examination of effects of the Howard Government’s economic policies on families living in regional Australia.

The Task Force will report back to the Caucus on 27 November 2006.

Friday 23 June 2006

CONTACT: Kim Beazley Colin Campbell 0407 787 181 Catherine King Rhys Davies 0409 855 946