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Opinion: Labor is sensible for opposing to lock in unaffordable tax cuts

We at the Australian Council of Social Service welcome Labor’s sensible opposition to the Stage 3 tax cuts, which risk future cuts to essential services.

The Opposition is taking a responsible position in opposing stage 3 of the tax cuts which would cost $12 billion dollars every year from 2024, on top of $18 billion already legislated.

The government is banking on the lowest growth in funding for services in 50 years and growth in GDP and wages of more than 3% to pay for these tax cuts. That’s just not the real world.

We can’t know what the economy will look like in five years time, so the government’s plan to lock in these expensive high-end tax cuts years in advance is a hazardous path to take.

Locking in high-end tax cuts years in advance means we won’t be able to meet the challenges we face as a community, with an ageing population, a housing affordability crisis and persistent poverty rates.

We need to be able to ensure we address the major gaps in essential services we all rely on, including health, education, aged care, childcare, community services and social security. But we won’t be able to do this if we sign up to expensive high-end tax cuts for years down the track.

We urge the Government to split the Bill so each stage can be considered on its merits. This is the responsible course.

Dr Cassandra Goldie is Chief Executive Officer of Australian Council of Social Service

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