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Greens Back Global Call For Debt Forgiveness

The Australian Greens have joined an international delegation signing onto a letter calling for extensive debt forgiveness from international financial institutions, including the IMF and World Bank, for International Development Association countries. The letter was initiated by U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders and Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, and signatories include Jeremy Corbyn, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Yanis Varoufakis.

Senator Mehreen Faruqi and Adam Bandt MP are the sole Australian signatories to this unprecedented letter.

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Greens call for Federal Parliament to sit in June

The Greens will introduce a motion in the Senate calling for Federal Parliament to sit in June to strengthen democracy and address ongoing issues of national importance.

“The Covid crisis response and the plan for recovery demand more transparency in government decision-making. The Senate Covid Committee plays a critical role, but is no substitute for full parliamentary oversight," said Senator Larissa Waters, Greens Senate Leader and spokesperson on Democracy.

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Greens Move To Allow Universities Access To JobKeeper

The Greens have lodged a motion in the Senate to disallow parts of the Coronavirus Economic Response Package (Payments and Benefits) Amendment Rules (No. 2) 2020 that have the effect of excluding universities from accessing the JobKeeper wage subsidy.

The motion would only disallow provisions of the rules regarding JobKeeper eligibility for higher education providers, which extend the turnover calculation period from one to six months for universities and mandate that government funding be included in the calculations.

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Childcare Review: Minister Must Ensure Equity And Make Childcare Free For Good

Australian Greens Education spokesperson Senator Mehreen Faruqi has said the Education Minister must rule out the reintroduction of childcare fees in his current review of the COVID-19 childcare package.

Senator Faruqi said:

“Free and universal childcare has been a huge step forward for access to childcare. It should be made permanent.

“The Minister should be looking at how to ensure ongoing access to free childcare, and options for expanded public operation of childcare.

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Publicly-owned COVID19 vaccine manufacturer may be only way to save lives: Greens

Adam Bandt 7 May 2020

The Australian Greens have called on the government to establish publicly funded vaccine manufacturing capacity in Australia to ensure any COVID19 vaccine is available to all Australians.

A recent Defence science technology report outlined in today’s media has warned of a shortage in vaccines in Australia during a pandemic because of the lack of production capacity in Australia.

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68% of Australians want stronger environmental laws, new poll shows

More than two thirds (68%) of Australians want stronger laws to protect our wildlife and environment, new research shows.

Poll figures released today, come after the Federal Government announced plans to amend Australia’s environment laws in a bid to fast-track applications for developments such as new mines and land-clearing as part of its post-COVID-19 agenda. 

Greens Spokesperson for the Environment Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said:

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Visa Holders

The Australian government should develop and publicly release criteria for temporary visa holders to be allowed to return to Australia.
 
During the COVID-19 select committee hearing today it was revealed that Australian Border Force officials have no criteria for granting exemptions to the travel ban for ‘compelling and compassionate’ grounds.
 
“The decision making on this has been completely arbitrary, leaving hundreds of people stranded overseas, despite holding valid visas,” Greens Immigration spokesperson Senator Nick McKim said.
 

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