This week in review - 27 March 2019

Mark Henley

People in Christchurch
The events in Christchurch have certainly reached around the world.  What resonates for me this far from the event (in both time and distance) is the tremendous amount of empathy and kindness that has emerged from around the world.  Our thoughts are with all of the people in Christchurch particularly those who have lost loved ones.  The amazing leadership shown by Prime Minister Ardern is something to acknowledge and celebrate.  She is inspirational in everything she has done in relation to this event.  QCOSS community engagement over recent times has been themed on creating communities “where everyone contributes, matters and belongs” which is very relevant.

Community Champions
This week QCOSS, QDN and ADCQ have brought together over 50 people to build skills in participatory process and begin a process of being a local champion for their community.  This initiative is the third part of our Movement for change and has come directly from the 10 Changing Lives, Changing Communities events QCOSS has been hosting across Queensland with our partners since August last year.  Our focus is to support people, the local champions, to have the skills required to play a significant role in community change processes.  The training they are doing will be over two days and I look forward to updating you on this initiative as we move forward.

Sign on to stop tax cuts!
I ask you to please support this campaign being led by ACOSS to support our universal and support services in Australia.

They need us to sign this Joint Letter from the Community by no later than 12pm Thursday 28 March (this week). There is growing speculation that the Federal Government may hand out additional personal income tax cuts in the Federal Budget next week, and try to get them through the Senate before the end of the sittings, and the calling of the Federal Election. 

We must do everything we can to stop this because we know Australia is failing to invest enough in essential services, including health, education, housing, aged care and our social security system.  Instead, the Coalition has already legislated one of the largest tax cuts seen, a total of $25 billion a year for the two ‘’phases’’ due to commence from 2020, of which half will go to the highest 20 per cent of income-earners (over $90 000). Not only should we avoid more tax cuts, it’s important that these ‘high-end’ cuts are unwound.

Click here to read the letter and sign on.

A Boost for Social Enterprise in Queensland
I recently attended the launch of Social Traders social procurement services in Queensland. Social Traders will and is bringing a strong platform of experience and resources to Queensland and is working closely with a number of organisations. Importantly they are supporting Queensland Social Enterprise Council (QSEC) to progress development of social enterprises across the state. Social enterprises have successfully existed for many years in Queensland. At the launch there were positive statements made by Minister Fentiman about her support for social enterprises in Queensland and making it part of future state government procurement. With this support, we should see social enterprise continue to flourish into the future as they have a lot to offer people and communities across the state.

World Social Work Day
World Social Work Day was last week, I hope you were able to we celebrate and recognise social workers as champions for social justice, self-determination and human rights. The vital work of social workers can be seen in a wide variety of settings. Whether we work in health, mental health, schools, child protection, aged care, disability, family violence, academia or management, social workers bring the values of our profession to wherever they work.

Mark Henley

Chief Executive Officer