LIBERAL INACTION COSTING CHARITIES $7.5 MILLION AND COUNTING
Months of inaction from Scott Morrison and his Liberal colleagues have cost charities millions of dollars that could have instead helped Australians in need.
Six months ago today, the Senate Select Committee tabled its report into Charitable Fundraising in the 21st Century, calling on parliament to fix Australia’s fundraising laws within the next two years. The report found that under the current fundraising laws, charities face a paperwork burden each year of around $15 million.
Fixing fundraising shouldn’t be a partisan issue. That’s why the inquiry, chaired by Labor Senator Catryna Bilyk, delivered a unanimous report. Its recommendations were supported by Greens Senator Rachel Siewert, Liberal Senators Eric Abetz and Amanda Stoker, former Labor Senator David Smith, and former UAP Senator Brian Burston.
Not only have charities across Australia had to deal with six years of a hostile government, they’ve now faced six months of inaction, at an estimated cost of $7.5 million.
The past six years have seen the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Government churn through six ministers responsible for the charities commission. They appointed an anti-charities commissioner to white-ant the sector, and mounted a series of attacks on the rights of charities to speak for the community in public policy debates.
The Morrison Government needs to get its act together, and listen to its own Senators, who are calling for swift reform to fundraising laws.
Charities should not be treated as the enemy. They should not be burdened with unnecessary paperwork that distracts them from their real work of helping those in need.
Australians expect the Morrison Government to work with charities, not against them.
Authorised by Paul Erickson, ALP, Canberra.