Federal Budget 2015: Time for radical re-thinking about public policy and women

by Marie Coleman

With astonishing rapidity, the policy toward women of conservative governments in Australia has shifted from encouraging them to stay in the home, rearing children, making homes, and caring for the aged, to overtly penalising those wanting to retain those roles in whole or in part.

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Abbott- Budget 2015-16 Child Care- Paid Parental Leave

Marie Coleman

Policy wonks like to talk about undertaking distributional analysis of any new policy proposals- spends or saves- before going out into public discussion.

With families’ policies it is essential to see who are the winners, who are the losers, and whether all the various pieces fit together.
So the Mother’s Day pitch for benefits to low and middle income families need to be looked at carefully.

The moving feast over the last 48 hours has been discussion around how good the child care package is, and whether the Government can get the Opposition and cross benches to accept the bitter off-setting savings. Low income families are asked to accept a loss of benefits of $9.4 billion over the next four years to pay for the package. Read more

A graph click here from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency gives a snapshot of the paid parental leave systems of some of the industries reporting to the Agency in 2014. Obviously it does not cover agencies not required to report. Note that some 48.1% of reporting agencies provide some PPL, but there is considerable difference between the various industries. Visit www.wgea.gov.au

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