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The biggest issue in your life right now...
An audience with the PM!


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#1 F.E.B.E

Posted 13 June 2012 - 01:56 PM

Essential Baby is thrilled to be given an audience with the Prime Minister this Friday.

We'll be visiting Kirribilli house to talk about what Australian women want and we'd like to pass on as many as your comments and questions as possible.

We're absolutely thrilled that Essential Baby has been recognised as a key venue for Australian women to chat and share their thoughts and opinions.

So tell me - what  is keeping you up at night? Where could the government offer more assistance to help women and families?

Keep your replies constructive please - this is your chance to be heard.

#2 71Cath

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:00 PM

Recognise gay marriage please - yesterday if possible...

#3 Steggles

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:02 PM

QUOTE (71Cath @ 13/06/2012, 02:00 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Recognise gay marriage please - yesterday if possible...

+1


#4 Ingrid the Swan

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:04 PM

QUOTE (71Cath @ 13/06/2012, 01:30 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Recognise gay marriage please - yesterday if possible...


+2

#5 The Falcon

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:05 PM

Do more to assist working parents with the cost of childcare, without means testing it, or at least without means testing it at the low level they usually consider appropriate

#6 farfaraway

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:06 PM

There is a chronic shortage of childcare places. Navigating the childcare system is a nightmare.

#7 joy6328

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:08 PM

The creation of more child care centres or child care spots. The ability for Private Nannies to be claimable on tax or to be able to be used instead of Child Care Centres.


#8 gemgirl

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:09 PM

Another vote for gay marriage - as a lesbian parent, I'd love it if my kids could see that our relationship is equal. My partner and I are in love, supportive and have a great relationship. We had a commitment ceremony, but haven't bothered with a civil union - we want to be married, please Julia. It's not just a piece of paper that we want, it's equal recognition. This is so important.

Also, I would like more support for high income families. The baby bonus and maternity leave is now means tested, family tax benefits A and B are means tested, etc etc. Yet high income families work hard and pay huge taxes. I know people in Government housing and on single parent benefits that appear to have more disposable income than high income families. This is not a popular issue for debate on EB (or in society), but it's an important issue for many voters. I feel that the Government is increasingly reducing support to high income families, such as the baby bonus/maternity leave which wasn't means tested before now. I just feel we shouldn't be penalising people for what they earn. I think a baby bonus should be on offer to all families, given the objective is to get people to have more children for the country's growth. High income people need that financial support, too, in order to take time off work. Given the contributions high income earners make to the country, I think it's time to offer them a little bit of support, too.

And now they're means testing private health insurance rebates, too! Enough surely is enough! Keep your high income workers motivated by supporting them, please.

Edited by gemgirl, 13 June 2012 - 02:48 PM.


#9 Cath-In-SA

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:10 PM

QUOTE (joy6328 @ 13/06/2012, 03:08 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The ability for Private Nannies to be claimable on tax or to be able to be used instead of Child Care Centres.

+1

#10 MGB

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:10 PM

Agree with Kate789, helping working parents with the cost of childcare. Such a shortage of childcare places, it's awful.

#11 Fossy

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:11 PM

Childcare options for shift workers. I cannot get childcare when I return to work unless I book my kids in everyday, which would cost more than i earn.  I only need 2 days a week. I work a rotating roster.  The other option is a nanny, but without rebates it's cost prohibitive! Makes returning to work very difficult!

#12 eskimoo

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:12 PM

QUOTE (CherryAmes @ 13/06/2012, 02:05 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hmm, I think it would be great for breastfeeding if mothers were helped to stay at home for at least the first six month, so it would be great if paid parental leave was extended.

It would also be great if there was a special carers allowance which allowed a parent of a child with a diagnosed disability to stay at home. If your child has cancer, or a significant disability, it is impossible for both parents to work. At present, the special carer's payment is only available for older children, not parents of young children.


I'd like this too.  I am facing this exact issue at the moment where my child is too young to receive payments (even with 2 recognised disabilities) yet I cannot return to work as I had planned.

#13 jojonbeanie

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:14 PM

Get the NDIS into gear now and make sure state based services are reasonably funded until the NDIS truely is in place. People with disabilitiesd can't wait several years more for the NDIS.




QUOTE (CherryAmes @ 13/06/2012, 02:05 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hmm, I think it would be great for breastfeeding if mothers were helped to stay at home for at least the first six month, so it would be great if paid parental leave was extended.

It would also be great if there was a special carers allowance which allowed a parent of a child with a diagnosed disability to stay at home. If your child has cancer, or a significant disability, it is impossible for both parents to work. At present, the special carer's payment is only available for older children, not parents of young children.

The current Carers Allowance, Carers Payment and Carers Adjustment Payment all cover young children.

#14 BadCat

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:15 PM

Better recognition of, and catering to, intelligent or gifted children.

Right now, so many really smart kids are not reaching their potential because advanced progams in schools are virtually non-existent.  Schools are getting away with pretending that a once a week extension group is catering to the smart kids.  It's not.  They are bored.  They are not being encouraged to stretch themselves.  And they are lazy because the education system is failing them.

If you want to make this country a smart country you have to invest in brains.  And you have to invest in them right from junior school.

#15 jojonbeanie

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:17 PM

Support the manufacturing industry. Get Australians developing smart ways to make things and add value, not just buy cheap overseas items.

#16 CallMeFeral

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:18 PM

QUOTE (71Cath @ 13/06/2012, 02:00 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Recognise gay marriage please - yesterday if possible...


+1


QUOTE (kate789 @ 13/06/2012, 02:05 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Do more to assist working parents with the cost of childcare, without means testing it, or at least without means testing it at the low level they usually consider appropriate


+1. Currently the rebate does not cover a full week of childcare, but part time work is very difficult to find.
On that note, also anything they could do to encourage part time work becoming a more accepted and thus available option. So many businesses could actually use a part time position to save money, but they assume that needing someone to do a job = full time.

And also alternate forms of childcare such as nannies should be eligible for rebate, or some other form of option for shiftworkers. And preschool's - it's crazy that preschool is not rebated but childcare is.

NDIS + 1 also.

#17 F.E.B.E

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:18 PM

Fantastic responses everyone. keep them coming.

#18 fit_dad

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:18 PM

QUOTE (missguided @ 13/06/2012, 02:14 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Ongoing financial assistance for children with ASD, so that the early intervention doesn't stop at 6 yrs old, but carries on through schooling.


This!

#19 Not Escapin Xmas

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:18 PM

Childcare. It's expensive, there aren't enough places, the hours aren't workable and on the other side, the pay is rubbish. Childcare is a WORK expense, and should be treated as such - tax deductible, flexible, and tailored to the needs of working parents.

#20 PrincessPeach

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:19 PM

Definitly the paid parental leave scheme needs to be fixed!

Longer time for payments + its silly that they have to be paid by your employer, it adds a really crazy amount of paperwork for a smallish (25 employees) business to deal with.

With the child care rebate, they need to extend it to include in-home nannies, there are a lot of shiftworkers out there and this is really their only option for care. Also most centres close at 6pm - not really practical for most parents.

Edited by PrincessPeach, 13 June 2012 - 02:22 PM.


#21 CallMeFeral

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:20 PM

And also better funding and management for public schools - the drain of good students from the public school system is killing the country's brains and becoming a two class education system.
If public schools got better, more people would see them as a viable option. And the scaling system needs to be fixed so a 'smart' kid in a 'dumb' school doesn't get pulled down because of it.

#22 Moo1234

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:21 PM

+1 for Gay Marriage

+1 for support for Child Care....how can they expect Mum's to work when the cost of care is more than they earn! Particularly when you have more than one child....

+1 for disability support.

#23 CallMeFeral

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:21 PM

QUOTE (Escapin @ 13/06/2012, 02:18 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Childcare is a WORK expense, and should be treated as such - tax deductible, flexible, and tailored to the needs of working parents.


Well put.

#24 Crazy.Whimsy

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:22 PM

QUOTE (71Cath @ 13/06/2012, 02:00 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Recognise gay marriage please - yesterday if possible...


We shouldn't even need to discuss this! Just do it already!

Also Senior Pension rates need to be fixed. How on earth can people survive on those amounts? Why should they after everything they have contributed to the country?

#25 gemgirl

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:22 PM

Oh, and well done EB on getting this!




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