Filter by April, 2018

Radical ideas—the jobs guarantee

Once considered too radical to be taken seriously, ideas like the universal basic income (UBI) have now become part of mainstream debate. The most recent radical idea to enter the mainstream in the US is the jobs guarantee. Rather than offering unemployed and underemployed workers job-finding programs or training opportunities, under the jobs guarantee, the government would offer them actual jobs. A number of high profile Democrats have gotten behind the idea and it’s being debated in the pages of respectable publications like the New York Times, the Washington Post, the New Republic, Newsweek, and Vox. The jobs guarantee is an unashamedly political idea. In a piece for the Nation, Se... Read more...

’Fighting for funding’: where to next for the NDIS?

The Government has announced that it will not proceed with its proposed 0.5 percentage point increase to the Medicare levy. The increase in the levy was to have raised $8 billion over four years and to be used in part to assist with funding the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). The Bill to introduce the increase was opposed by Labor, which said it would only support it for people earning over $87,000 per year. This FlagPost looks at the implications of the decision not to proceed with the Medicare levy increase for the funding of the NDIS.  Read more...

Changes to the Assurance of Support scheme

The Minister for Social Services, Dan Tehan, recently made changes to the Assurance of Support (AoS) scheme which will have a significant impact on those seeking to help family members migrate to Australia. An AoS is an assurance from an Australian resident that they will take financial responsibility for a new migrant during a set period, and will repay any social security payments received by the migrant during the period. The changes to the scheme will mean that there are much higher income requirements for those offering assurances. A spokesperson for the Minister stated that ‘the change will ensure Australia’s social security system remains sustainable’. Read more...

China’s policing assistance in the Pacific: a new era?

While there has been renewed discussion and debate surrounding China’s infrastructure assistance to Pacific nations over the last several months, less attention has been paid to China’s growing policing and law enforcement presence in the region. While still in its early stages, this presence spans several of the Pacific Island countries which recognise the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and, in some cases, has expanded beyond the provision of facilities and equipment to include training, secondments and joint operations. Read more...

A snapshot of temporary migrants in Australia

A budding public conversation is underway about Australia’s population. Perhaps to help inform this conversation, the Department of Home Affairs has released a new data product documenting the number of migrants in Australia who hold a temporary visa.  Read more...

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Flagpost is a blog on current issues of interest to members of the Australian Parliament

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