Westmead Hospital could lose up to $650 million in federal funding over the next decade

The Greens candidate for Parramatta, Phil Bradley today said “The Parramatta Greens condemn the changes made to Federal-State funding arrangements in the 2014 Federal Coalition’s budget, which saw $57 billion axed from local hospitals over the next decade. The Turnbull government’s recent budget restored only $2.9 billion of these cuts. Based on this, figures provided by the Parliamentary Budget Office and hospital bed figures provided by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, an estimate has been made that Westmead Hospital could lose up to $650 million in federal funding over the next decade. This is roughly the equivalent of 400 hospital beds, or 700 nurses, or 400 doctors’ salaries each year!”

“On the other hand, The Greens support phasing out the Private Health Insurance Rebate. This will return more than $50 billion over the next decade for reinvestment directly  in the public health system.  This would fund the growth in hospital costs for well over a decade and allow for a greater investment in primary care, including dental care and other allied health services. The savings would also support lower patient to nurse ratios in all hospital units throughout NSW, especially in intensive care units.”

Mr Bradley added “As the Greens candidate for Parramatta, I will work with Greens MPs for these ratios to be made mandatory in the nurses’ Award. Ratios should also be extended to the community health system. There is plenty of well researched evidence that improved ratios not only save thousands of lives, but also lead to better heath outcomes and save overall health system costs.”

Medicare must also be protected with dental and mental health services included in it.

“The Greens see health as an investment, not a cost. Ensuring that our health system will always be accessible, affordable and universal is our priority because patients must be at the heart of the system. By closing  major tax loopholes for the rich we can then invest much of the savings in healthcare, so that we can take advantage of new life-enhancing treatments,  improve access to health services and reduce out-of-pocket costs.”

“Last week, the Greens also announced an amazing new mental health policy which based on population, would mean at least $300 million additional funding for mental health over the next four years for NSW. This will provide better support of the mental health and wellbeing of NSW people, including in Parramatta with a renewed focus on primary care,” Mr Bradley added.

For more information, please contact Phil Bradley Greens Candidate for Parramatta  on 0425 265 170.

Greens vision for a clean transport future includes $500 million for Parramatta Light Rail

The Parramatta Greens welcomed the Australian Greens’ announcement of a dedicated $10 billion funding allocation over four years, to prioritise the public transport that Australians need to fix traffic congestion, reduce pollution and make our cities and towns healthy and liveable.
“After years of neglect it’s time to invest in public transport and give people the choice to leave their car at home,” said Senator Janet Rice, the Australian Greens spokesperson for transport and infrastructure.

The Greens candidate for Parramatta, Phil Bradley said, “People in Western Sydney are fed up with wasting their precious time stuck in traffic. It’s stressful and creates wasteful fossil fuel pollution which contributes to dangerous climate change. The exorbitant $16.8 billion WestConnex $11 one-way toll road will only worsen traffic congestion during its construction and in ten years will be just as congested as the M4 is now!
“What Western Sydney and Parramatta need urgently is more light and heavy rail, creating efficient public transport cross connections to existing rail lines radiating from Sydney.
“Instead of polluting toll roads, the Greens will invest an initial $10 billion over four years as the first instalment in a ten year $25 billion commitment to prioritise clean energy driven public transport works. The Greens’ commitment for public transport will turbo-charge priority projects still awaiting federal funding contributions, including $500m of federal money for the urgently needed Parramatta light rail system from the $1 billion Sydney light rail allocation. There will also be about $125m to upgrade NSW buses to hybrid/electric buses, which are quieter and less polluting,” added Mr Bradley.
In addition, the $10 billion four year Greens clean transport plan will:

  • Establish an annual $250 million Active Transport Fund for cycling and walking infrastructure.
  • Fast track desperately needed high speed intercity rail powered by clean energy to obviate the need for an extravagant polluting 24X7 Western Sydney Airport.
  • Commit an additional $500 million to shift freight onto rail through new rail freight lines.
  • Invest an additional $250m in arterial road works to maximise efficient traffic flow and enable better bus services to suburban and outer-urban communities.
  • Commit to $300 million in additional funding for the Black Spot road safety program.
  • Accelerate the electric vehicle revolution through $201 million in infrastructure and fleet grants, and five years’ worth of free registration for new fully electric vehicles.

For further information contact : Phil Bradley on 0425 265 170

Liberal Party betrays Parramatta business on NBN

Phil Bradley, Greens candidate for Parramatta, is challenging the Liberal candidate Michael Beckwith to support business, jobs and sustainable growth by backing high speed internet for Parramatta.
“In the twenty first century, business needs high speed broadband, just like it needed telephones last century,” Mr Bradley said. “Without a good internet service, Parramatta business will be limited to using outdated technology, while the rest of the world roars ahead.”
“Parramatta is ideally positioned near the geographic centre of Sydney, and should become a hub for business and for employment. But with the Liberals’ fibre to the node (FTTN) mixed with the old copper network, Parramatta will be severely constrained from competing nationally and globally.
“In the past, states and cities attracted business by offering cheap power (like the aluminium smelters at Bell Bay and Tomago), roads and rail (to serve agriculture, mining and other industries) and when all else failed, the government even offered reduced taxes. In the twenty first century, governments overseas are offering high speed internet.
“The experience of cities that have invested in 1000 Mbps broadband shows that it is a catalyst for all types of business. It is not just about streaming movies as the Liberals seem to think. It is about online retailing, supply chain management, media production, using 3D printing instead of holding inventory. It is about industrial design, professional services, financial services and medical imaging. It is about e-commerce, high-tech startups, transport management and more. Above all, it is about business and jobs. The possibilities are endless. And these possibilities will be denied to Parramatta if we accept the Liberals’ substandard ‘NBN light’, based on last century technology.
“However the most important part is the ability to upgrade a network. Fibre to the node will be overloaded and out of date by the time it is completed. Worse, it cannot be easily upgraded to cope with increased demand. Fibre to the premises (FTTP) will have capacity for a decade or more, using current technology, but better still, new technology is becoming available to upgrade fibre to the premises to ten or a hundred times its current capacity, without a major rebuild. Fibre to the premises will “future proof” Parramatta for decades.
Mr Bradley continued, ”Current estimates show that the costs of FTTP and FTTN are about the same, although the high speed, upgradeable FTTP might take a bit longer to complete. The Liberals are building a substandard, slow speed network. Parramatta needs a high speed, state of the art network (with space for growth) even if it means waiting an extra year.
“In short, the Liberals’ “fraudband” will be out of date before it is completed, condemning Parramatta to become a business backwater. The Greens proposal of FTTP will provide Parramatta with a springboard for innovation, sustainable business growth and increased secure employment.”

For further information contact:

Phil Bradley, Greens Candidate for Parramatta:  0425 265 170

Welcome Refugees at Parramatta Park : Challenge to Coalition and Labor Policy

 Organised by Parramatta Greens, and Co-Hosted by The Refugee Action Coalition and People Just Like Us

The Parramatta Greens today urged the old Parties to end their cruel treatment of asylum seekers and refugees.

A Welcome Refugees Picnic held this week in Parramatta was attended by nearly 40 people, including refugees from South Sudan, Syria, Sri Lanka, Iran and Iraq. Greens candidate for Parramatta, Phil Bradley spoke to those at the Picnic, saying “We challenge the old major parties to acknowledge before the federal election, that seeking asylum is a human right and that sending refugees to offshore prison camps must stop. Refugees are fleeing wars, torture, threats of death and persecution by discriminatory regimes. These people need our help, not further inhumane treatment. Others also need to be welcomed, such as our Pacific Island neighbours who are being forced to abandon their homes due to climate change.”

Lead Greens Senate candidate Lee Rhiannon, who welcomed the refugees to the picnic, said, “Earlier this month some refugees on Nauru passed 1,000 days in detention. Rather than turning men, women and children who are seeking asylum away, we should be welcoming them to our country. The Greens policy will continue to call on the Liberal, National and Labor parties to increase our humanitarian intake from refugee camps to at least 50, 000 people per year.”

Some of the refugees at the Picnic gave powerful accounts of their terrifying experiences.

A refugee from Syria described how his country now has almost nothing left to sustain people’s lives. No jobs, no infrastructure. Battles, bombing and ISIS have destroyed almost everything. He referred to the Australian government’s promise to accept 12,000 Syrian refugees. He said that because of slowness of bureaucratic processes, only a few hundred have been processed so far, when at least 4,000 were supposed to be here by last Christmas. He congratulated Canada for managing in the same time period to process and accept 26,000 Syrian refugees.

A Tamil refugee from Sri Lanka said that he fled for his life during the 2002-4 civil war and that had he remained he may not have survived the May 2009 massacre of tens of thousands of Tamils. He said that conflict and repression of Tamils is still ongoing. He is now a successful businessman.

A South Sudanese refugee spoke about spending 14 years in a refugee camp in North Uganda, which the so-called Lord’s Resistance Army raided, stealing food and raping women. There were no facilities at first, until NGOs later added some basic support. He depended on scholarship aid to get an education and got to Australia via a “re-union” program in 2004, as his brother had arrived in Australia much earlier. He is now fully employed in community service helping the disadvantaged.

A young woman whose Iraqi parents fled from Saddam Hussein’s terror regime, told us she was born in a refugee camp. She is now employed to support young people into “transition to work programs”. She urged us to continue supporting refugees to adapt to our society and to find productive jobs.

For further information, including contact with the relevant refugees, phone

Phil Bradley Greens Candidate for Parramatta – 0425 265 170

Senator Lee Rhiannon’s media officer Freya Newman – 0411 669 022

 

90 Storey Aspire Tower an Inefficient, Expensive Monstrosity for Parramatta

The Greens candidate for Parramatta Phil Bradley today said: “I’m amazed that the 70-90 Storey Aspire tower was described in the Parramatta Sun in such glowing terms. I think most people would think it an inefficient monstrosity, totally out of context with other lower height buildings nearby and premature without the additional public services necessary for its hundreds of additional residents.
It will be thermally inefficient because of the high external surface to floor area ratio – this means high energy bills and more carbon emissions. Structurally inefficient because of high wind stresses due to its excessive height and high surface to floor area, and due to high foundation loads – this means higher building and buyer costs.
Hydraulically inefficient due to the extremely high water pressures needed for upper level fire protection – this means higher costs and possibly greater fire risk.
Socially inefficient and alienating as is  recognised by social science experts for high rise structures.
Expensive because of all of the above. The building will be an ugly eye-sore rather than the euphemistic architect’s description ‘highly recognisable on the skyline’ because it will stand out like the proverbial ‘sore thumb’.”
Mr Bradley added, “Unfortunately, the designers were stuck with a Council brief to design a 90 storey building on a relatively very small site with the top 20 storeys infringing aircraft safety surfaces. I think the hundreds of Parramatta home seekers and those overshadowed by this building would much prefer one with affordable housing and no more than 30 storeys high.
For further information, please contact Phil Bradley on 0425 265 170.

Greens Preferences in Parramatta Electorate still likely to be decisive

The Greens today announced Phil Bradley as their candidate for the electorate of Parramatta in the federal election this year. Mr Bradley will work with NSW Greens lead Senate candidate, Lee Rhiannon during the campaign with a view to banning political donations from developers and mining companies.

Mr Bradley said, “With Parramatta being a marginal electorate, our Greens supporters’ preferences are likely to again be critical in deciding the winner, as they did in 2013.

Greens NSW anti-corruption spokesperson Jamie Parker MP has already given notice in the NSW Parliament of a new bill to reduce corruption risk by banning political donations from mining companies.

Mr Bradley added, “Senator Lee Rhiannon presented a similar bill to the Senate, but both major parties have opposed limiting political donations and they voted against the Greens plan to form a national ICAC.

“In considering our How to Vote recommendation, the Parramatta Greens will give strong consideration as to whether the Liberal and Labor candidates have publicly supported formation of a Federal ICAC and a ban on political donations from the mining, development, tobacco, alcohol and gambling industries.

The Greens see both old parties leaping to the right, especially in their support for overdevelopment, subsidising the polluting fossil fuel industry with many billions of dollars of our taxes ($30-40B in 2015 says IMF) and in their inhumane treatment of refugees”, Mr Bradley said.

“The Greens are the only party prepared to act against dangerous climate change by cutting subsidies, banning mining corporations’ donations to political parties, and by placing a moratorium on any new coal mines and coal seam gas extraction, such as was proposed close to Parramatta at Prospect. Instead, we will fund a green jobs-rich economy powered by clean renewable energy by stopping the billions of dollars now being squandered on fossil fuel subsidies for the big mining corporations. Higher taxes on the excessive profits of the big banks and mining companies would also help to provide:

• billions more to our schools than the current Gonski proposal, more funding for job skills training in TAFE and for the reversal of university funding cuts; 

• major public transport and health improvements;

• more affordable social housing; 

• restoration of support for struggling single parents; 

• and much more”, said Mr Bradley.

“I have worked closely with Senator Rhiannon on a number of local Parramatta campaigns including protecting the Female Factory Precinct’s heritage value from overdevelopment. Senator Rhiannon’s motion on this issue was passed by the Senate.

Mr Bradley urges people to VOTE 1 GREENS including for Greens lead NSW Senate candidate Senator Lee Rhiannon, for a healthy, caring and equitable Australia.

For further information, please contact Phil on 0425 265 170.

Coalition disrespects local democracy and Greens call for constitutional protection

The decision of the NSW Coalition to push for forced mergers of local councils builds on years of disrespect for democracy by the Coalition at every level of government. To preserve local democracy the Greens are renewing the call to protect local government in the Commonwealth Constitution.
Whether it is supporting property developers running for local council, selling the public electricity grid or allowing rivers of corporate donations to political parties, the story is always the same. Now the Coalition is again backing big business instead of ordinary residents. Forced amalgamations is only the latest in this series of attacks on our democracy.
Our local councils have the respect and support of the great majority of local residents and only an out of touch Premier would miss this.
Parramatta Greens convenor Phil Bradley said:
“. . .We Parramatta Greens oppose the proposed forced council amalgamations, as most people believe that as many decisions as possible should be made at a local level. This starts with deciding on the size and shape of your own local council. As councils get bigger they become more dismissive of the needs of local communities. This means less effective service to locals.
. . .Parramatta Greens will promote protection of local government through Constitutional recognition as one of the key themes in the Federal election.
. . . We will work with Parramatta, Holroyd and Auburn Council residents to keep their councils local!”
Greens Senator Lee Rhiannon has also said:
“. . .The Greens want to protect local democracy and this means guaranteeing its existence in the Commonwealth Constitution.
. . .For too long local government has been the plaything of arrogant state governments and it’s time we levelled the playing field by giving local councils constitutional recognition.
. . . The Baird Coalition government is making a blatant power grab with its forced amalgamations push and communities are awake to this.”
For further information, please contact:
Phil Bradley
Convenor of Parramatta Greens
0425 265 170

7-Eleven Half Pay Scam

Adam Bandt presents legislation to ensure fair wages. It is aimed at 7-Eleven franchises that have exploited workers on temporary working visas, and threatened them with deportation for speaking up. Franchise head offices should be responsible for fair work practices, and fair franchise contracts that enable their businesses to afford fair pay.