Thursday, 5 March 2015
Intergenerational Report: 2015
by leave—I move:
That the Senate take note of the document.
I basically seek to continue comments that Senator Milne has made on this report. She made them very eloquently, but there are a couple of key areas in my portfolio that I would like to cover in particular. There is one paragraph on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples—one paragraph for our first peoples. Surely the findings of the latest Close the gap report and the fact that we are not on track to meet our targets by 2031 should have sent a hint to the government that, given our commitments and supposedly our multiparty support for closing the gap, we would have had significant coverage in this report of how we actually address the intergenerational disadvantage that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people suffer, particularly in light of the fact that, unless we actually inject more resources and get some more programs in place, we are not going to be able to close the gaps by the target dates we have established.
This is an intergenerational report that does not mention intergenerational inequality, but that is what we are in danger of generating in this country. Last year the Community Affairs References Committee held its inquiry into inequality, and we produced a report that clearly demonstrates that we have inequality in this country, that it is—