North coast residents are being urged to take part in a snap rally to protest the impact of the federal budget on the community on Sunday June 8 at Byron Youth Centre (1 Gilmore Crescent) from 1pm.
The rally has the support of Byron Shire mayor Simon Richardson, who will speak along with director of Byron Youth Service, Peter McGlennon, and Greens Party spokesperson Dawn Walker.
Budget cuts could begin to affect people as soon as July, yet they have to pass the senate (upper house).
‘This budget will have a major impact on our community,’ says Cr Richardson.
‘Council will be $250,000 worse off each year due to cuts in federal funding and pensioners will receive a lower rates subsidy, placing greater pressure on Council to make up the shortfall.
Council hit by budget: mayor
‘It’s particularly upsetting that our tireless youth workers and others providing essential services to the vulnerable in our community have had their funding gutted.
‘If the federal government continues to abrogate their responsibilities, significant financial pressure will be placed on an already strained local government sector.’
Greens spokesperson Dawn Walker says, ‘This is a brutal and heartless budget written for big business.’
‘The government has no plan or vision; instead they’re hiding behind a fake budget emergency to justify massive cuts, while ignoring serious challenges like global warming and inequality.’
Peter McGlennon, director at Byron Youth Service, says, ‘We already work on meagre funding because the people who work in youth organisations like ours care.
‘The recently announced cuts to funding just make it much harder for BYS to support those in our community who are most at risk.’
BYS program cut
Funding for the Youth Connections program run out of BYS to assist young people transition into vocational training and employment will end in December this year.
Budget cuts are expected to create particular hardship for families, the sick, young, seniors and vulnerable people across the north coast.