G’day, and welcome to PEDESTRIAN.TV’s crib sheet for today’s Federal Election. Maybe you’re standing in line at your local primary school RN waiting to vote – hell, maybe you’re balancing your phone in one hand, and a dank democracy snag in the other – so we’ll try to keep this short and shiny.
This is our take on the social issues at the forefront of this election, and how each of the major political players say they’ll deal with their fellow humans / underlings. That includes you, so y’all best be paying attention.
Is this a comprehensive run-down? Nope. Will you leave this article with a bit more nous about the situation? Hopefully. So, here’s how Liberal, Labor, the Greens and minor parties stack up on…
Furthermore, Malcolm Turnbull intimated that regardless of the way Australia swings in the plebiscite, it won’t even be binding for his pollies. While the bloke himself is pretty erudite and not at all shaken by the prospect of *shock horror* LGBT Australians, the perception is that he’s beholden to the right-wing faction of his party.
Are you a fan of sexual and reproductive liberties in all of their wonderful forms? Well, scope out The Sex Party. They’re an accepting bunch, and they sure as hell want everyone to be able to love another without being told they’re naughty for doing so.
TL;DR marriage equality is coming, one way or another – but some parties seem to be putting multi-million dollar obstructions in the way.
IMMIGRATION & OFFSHORE DETENTION
Right, if you haven’t yet had your heart crushed by 2016, this ought to do it for you. Australia’s offshore detention system has been maligned for yonks, but the two major players are both actually pretty steadfast in keeping it going.
The Liberal Party and their wind-up Immigration Minister Peter Dutton have told the nation time and time again that the crushing bureaucratic nightmares of detention on Manus Island and Nauru are preferable over the scourge of people smugglers. A vote for them is a vote for keeping asylum seekers in limbo in the Pacific. Stop the boats, and all that.
The thing is, Labor don’t differ from that viewpoint much either. We’ll still be siphoning arrivals into those islands under a Shorten government. Still, they do want an end to temporary protection visas that keep new arrivals in settlement purgatory, and they’ve claimed they want to reinstate a 90 day rule to keep the processing system accountable.
Utterly petrified of the thought of asylum seekers in general? Well, Rise Up Australia is the party for you. Their policy platform advocates a strict U-turn policy on all oceanic arrivals, along with generally beefing up our border protections. Oh, for the record, they saw it fit to mention “8 out of every 10 refugees and asylum seekers are Muslims” in their policy statement. Make of that what you will.
Elsewhere, Labor have labeled health their numero uno priority in this election. Hospitals and funding for primary care services obviously play a large role, but they’re also behind medicinal cannabis for seriously ill patients, they’ve signaled their intention to implement programs to cut our nation’s suicide rate in half in a decade, and they’re looking at drug addiction as a health issue, not a strictly criminal one.
You may recall that a slew of Aussie art institutions just had their government funding slashed. It’s had a serious impact on the industry, and the scene is still hurtin’ from the cuts. The Liberal Party don’t actually make mention of the arts at all in their list of election policies, so, uh… yeah. Jobs and growth.
The Liberal Party’s main focus this election in the realm of Indigenous Australia is… well, jobs and growth. They want to establish a $115 million Indigenous entrepreneurship fund to bolster business opportunities, and they’ve signaled they’ll commit another $10 million to preserving Indigenous languages. Elsewhere, they’ve reminded us all of the nearly $5 billion penciled in for the future, that will go towards the ‘Indigenous Advancement Strategy’.
Labor have flagged their commitment to Closing the Gap between Indigenous health and that of broader Australia, and they’ve pinpointed several preventable illnesses – heart disease, diabetes, chronic kidney disease – as areas for improvement. Funding remains a lil’ nebulous, though.
All three of the above parties support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander recognition in the Constitution, but there’s still a lot of leeway in how such a change would come about. Another plebiscite, anyone?
So, now you’ve got an inkling towards how each party are skewed on the humanities. Feel free to scoot over here to examine each party’s economic framework.
Source: The Liberal Party / The Labor Party / The Greens.