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Vinnies urges fairer tax system

The St Vincent de Paul Society has told the Senate Inquiry into taxation that the Australian Tax System should be structured so as to be consistent with the principle of social justice.

John Wicks of the charity's National Social Justice Committee pointed out to the Inquiry that Australia is the third lowest taxing country amongst Western developed OECD countries, and has the fourth highest level of poverty.

He said recent Bureau of Statistics household income statistics document a rise in income inequality over the second half of the 1990s and into 2000-2001. Since 1996, the inequality measuring standard known as the GINI has increased alarmingly.

"Inevitably in any society there are those who, through no fault of their own are unable to sustain themselves, and society must take care of those people", commented Vinnies spokesperson Tony Dalton.

"In Australia today, we have another group, those who are denied access to employment by a macro-economic plan which appears to suggest that full employment is bad for economic development. These too must be cared for by society".

A St Vincent de Paul statement released yesterday said that a second primary function of the tax system is to provide funds for services generally used by the community, and commonly regarded as rights. It said a change to the tax system, including raising taxes, must be considered, if funds are inadequate.

St Vincent de Paul Society

St Vincent de Paul Society
St Vincent de Paul Society
Senate Inquiry into Taxation
Parliament of Australia Committees

International poverty expert visits Sydney (St Vincent de Paul Society)
Head of Irish Eradication of Poverty Program Speaks in Melbourne (St Vincent de Paul Society)
Combat Poverty

29 Jul 2003