Category Archives: Public Policy

Aged care: Commissioners hand government a ‘get out of jail’ card with disagreement between Commissioners.

Observers of the Aged Care Royal Commission were witness to an unprecedented sight at its final public hearings last week when the two Commissioners disagreed publicly on the future governance arrangements for Australia’s failing aged care system.

Posted in Health, Politics | 4 Comments

Housing affordability and homelessness – Monthly Digest Sept/Oct 2020

The following is the latest instalment of a monthly digest of interesting articles, research reports, policy announcements and other material relevant to housing stress/affordability and homelessness – with hypertext links to the relevant source.

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Underlying tension between mission and money in our universities

The corporatisation of the Higher Education System is complete. It is no longer driven by the community of science but by money.  Public higher education institutions are run as “businesses” in a higher education industry where revenues account for approximately … Continue reading

Posted in Education | 1 Comment

No one else in the world has tamed a second wave this large like Daniel Andrews (The Conversation Oct 26, 2020)

If the past few months have been like a long-haul flight, Victorians are now standing in the aisles waiting for the cabin door to open, a little groggy and disoriented but relieved.  They have every right to be. No other … Continue reading

Posted in Health, Politics, Top 5 | 25 Comments

Aged care and the magic pudding

Australia needs a modern fit for purpose aged care system that is affordable and responsive to the needs of older people and their families. At the same time, it must not impose an inequitable burden on younger people.

Posted in Health, Politics | 6 Comments

Busted higher education policy demands a reset

The corporatist/managerialist paradigm introduced in the 1990s, with its heavy focus on financial performance metrics, is being rejected by students, staff, business and the broader community.  The corporatisation of public higher education, and the substantial wealth it has created, has made … Continue reading

Posted in Education, Politics, Public Policy | 5 Comments

To those that have more will be given: Education resource gaps in Australia

New evidence shows that education resource gaps between disadvantaged and advantaged schools in Australia are among the largest in the OECD and the world. This is a shameful record for a country that regards itself as egalitarian.

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Home Affairs is too heavy handed to handle immigration

The 2020 Budget highlighted the dependence of Australia’s economic growth on a continually rising population. The Covid-19 border restrictions have caused negative net migration for the first time in more than a century. In a double whammy, the pandemic-induced anxieties … Continue reading

Posted in Politics, Refugees, Immigration | 4 Comments

Despite more than 30 major inquiries, governments still haven’t fixed aged care. Why are the lobbyists getting away with it? (The Conversation Oct 21, 2020)

The government funds the sector and provides a relatively “light-touch” oversight, while the providers attend to the day-to-day running of the facilities. However, there is concern this alignment has meant successive governments are not as involved as they should be … Continue reading

Posted in Health | 1 Comment

Reform of the waterfront, with its dogs and security guards, was minor compared to what’s needed for health sector

Medicare funds the established system of health care delivery, a system that has not seen major changes since Medicare was established 56 years ago. It needs serious reform and particularly in the way the health workforce is structured.  The pandemic … Continue reading

Posted in Health, Politics | 3 Comments

The lack of integration in Australia’s health workforce. There are unconnected silos everywhere.

We urgently needed healthcare reforms :better workforce planning: more equitable workforce distribution,more efficient workforce utilisation,improved workforce productivity and financing reforms to sustain these changes. We call for the restoration of an independent health workforce agency to drive this essential work.

Posted in Health | 1 Comment

Migration in reverse in September 2020

Net international movements in September 2020 were negative 33,270, a reduction on the August 2020 outcome of negative 45,610.

Posted in Economy, Refugees, Immigration | 1 Comment

The Victorian lockdown is not just about health and lives!

Recently we have had Peter Singer, WHO envoys and Chris Uhlmann seemingly critical of the Covid-19 lockdown in Victoria. However, have they failed to recognise the significance of Victoria not being a country but one of eight states and territories?

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Saturday’s good reading and listening for the weekend 

What people in other forums are saying about public policy

Posted in Economy, Public Policy | 3 Comments

Misinformation about Covid-19. Don’t listen to Donald Trump or Alan Jones.

Here is the big so important question. As we prepare to ease some restrictions, will we, in contradistinction to many communities in other countries, embrace the long-term behaviours that must be normalised to allow us to live as safely and … Continue reading

Posted in Health, Politics, Top 5 | 13 Comments

No shortage of options to pay for rights-based care for the elderly with a disability. Part 2

A rights-based system for aged care to support those who are unable to participate fully in society will not be cheap. To bring us into line with the standards adopted by high performing countries with similar living standards will likely … Continue reading

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Universities belong to the whole community: why we should fund the humanities

Universities exist for the benefit of the whole community, including those who will never have the privilege of studying at one. Everyone benefits from thriving humanities departments – but these departments can’t fund themselves.

Posted in Education | 1 Comment

Gillard’s discrimination against people with a disability aged over 65 must be put right – Part 1

It is a truth universally acknowledged – our aged care system is in a tragic mess. It has become a badly regulated, provider-centric system focused more on limiting Commonwealth budget exposure than supporting the dignity and independence of older Australians.

Posted in Health, Politics, Top 5 | Tagged | 2 Comments

The aged care Royal Commission’s Covid-19 report is superficial, misleading and unhelpful

The report by the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety on the impact of Covid-19 is superficial and adds little to what is already being done to prevent and manage Covid in aged care.  The Commission’s conclusion regarding … Continue reading

Posted in Health, Politics | Tagged | 3 Comments

The National Disability Insurance Scheme: a consumer’s experience

Much has been made of the failings of the NDIS, but as a reluctant and apprehensive consumer, I have been more than pleasantly surprised.

Posted in Health | 3 Comments

Migrants: how can we make THEM more like US?

In a crisis, the Coalition government thinks that migrants need to jump through higher hoops.

Posted in Politics, Refugees, Immigration | 9 Comments

Why Was Immigration Compliance Activity Tanking Pre-Covid?

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton and his Department Secretary Mike Pezzullo are well known for their gratuitous cruelty. But does that mean they have been effective at maintaining immigration compliance and control?

Posted in Refugees, Immigration | Tagged | 3 Comments

Residential aged care funding rules are unfair and inefficient

The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety has highlighted the tragic weakness of residential aged care throughout Australia. Hundreds of older Australians have died prematurely during the COVID pandemic. For their sake, and ours, this tragedy must prove … Continue reading

Posted in Health | 1 Comment

LobbyLand. The politics of fossil fuels – the pits!

Fossil fuel lobbying is a cancer inflicting death, illness and misery on Australian society. How does it operate, what are its impacts and how can society allow this disabling condition to continue without treatment?

Posted in Health, Lobbyland, Politics | Tagged | 2 Comments

Uncivil society: women’s contributions grossly undervalued

Judging by last week’s budget, the federal government grossly undervalues the contributions made by female workers, both unpaid and paid. Given the huge contribution of women in care jobs during the worst of the pandemic, the absence of support is … Continue reading

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In Defence of Nomadic “Mere” Hunter-Gatherers

We increasingly hear people say that traditional Aboriginal societies were “not mere hunter-gatherers”. Unwittingly, this phrase downgrades the mobile foragers who occupied Australia on the eve of colonial occupation of their territory (and for tens of millennia before). The yearning … Continue reading

Posted in Human Rights, Indigenous affairs | 5 Comments

Saturday’s good reading and listening for the weekend 

What people in other forums are saying about public policy

Posted in Economy, Politics, Public Policy | 5 Comments

Private school funding model is deeply flawed

The Morrison Government’s funding model for private schools introduced earlier this year is littered with flaws and will result in massive over-funding of schools. It should be replaced by a new approach.

Posted in Education | Tagged | 3 Comments

The Budget: record spending, but very little for First Nations peoples

So unless you’ve been off the grid or in a bunker since January, the 2020 Budget has been offered up by Treasurer Josh Frydenberg last night (5 months late) with the historic backdrop being the cold, hard economic reality of … Continue reading

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Amnesty for Undocumented Workers

The ABC reports the Government is looking into an amnesty for undocumented workers to help address a shortage of farm workers.

Posted in Economy, Refugees, Immigration | Leave a comment