Veterans Affairs demoted to outer Ministry
No surprise there. Richard Marles will be flat out on Defence and far too busy to worry about veterans but it’s nice to know early in this government’s time that us veterans will get little attention. We know where we stand and it’s down the back of the room. Out of sight, out of mind
One disappointing matter in the ministry is that veterans’ affairs sits outside cabinet. Incoming defence minister Richard Marles’ explanation on ABC radio this morning wasn’t exactly persuasive.
“Veterans’ affairs largely has been a ministry which has been in the outer ministry, but of course it sits within a broader defence space. So there is definitely through me a voice that exists in that space in relation to the cabinet,” he said.
Whatever Labor says, Mr Marles will be busy on other pressing defence matters, and there’s no substitute for having a dedicated minister sitting in the cabinet and advocating for veterans. The new government may discover this over the next term.
Veterans’ affairs will have yet another new minister, continuing years of churn, while the new government brings more turnover for the science portfolio. One of the major contributions Labor can make in those areas is to maintain stability in its line-up of ministers.
Matthew Keogh is the new minister for Veterans Affairs And Defence Personnel. Matt, who served as shadow minister for defence industry, has been named as the minister for veterans’ affairs and the minister for defence personnel.
He seems positive in this speech he gave in 2018 on Veterans Affairs Legislation so let’s wait and see.
Will be interesting to see if the new government will be able to do anything about the evisceration of DVA which was a consequence of Abbott’s 2014 budget and the “efficiency dividend” implemented across all commonwealth funded agencies. It has resulted in an average 207 day wait before new claims can be addressed. The previous minister (Andrew Gee) threatened resignation prior to the last budget.
I’d say the answer is no with VA being downgraded and I’ve always had the feeling we don’t really matter to the ALP.
The ALP has promised to increase the annual rate of the TPI pension by $1000 -https://alp.org.au/policies/labors-plan-to-address-the-veterans-crisis#:~:text=5%20per%20cent.-,Increasing%20the%20Totally%20and%20Permanently%20Incapacitated%20(TPI)%20Veterans%20Pension,veterans%20from%201%20January%202023.
Yeah, right. Now back to the question at hand. What do you think about downgrading Veterans Affairs to the Outer Ministry?
Not a lot. And I wouldn’t call it “downgrading”. Supporting veterans (I prefer the term my father used “returned servicemen”) is not rocket science and should not be a demanding portfolio if it’s properly resourced. It simply requires staffing DVA adequately. My priorities are removing increased casualisation, wages theft, youth unemployment (the real figure is about three times what is published), quality of life for people with disabilities, the lack of affordable housing, and the cost of living. Some of these issues can be managed by the government in power, and some can’t, but the Coalition did nothing about any of them, except raiding Super.
Remember that two of the last three wars we were involved in (Vietnam and Iraq) were rationalised on the basis of lies. We invited ourselves into Vietnam (read Michael Sexton’s “War for the Asking”), and there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. As usual, Labor gets elected to clean up a Coalition mess. Without these two conflicts, there would be far fewer damaged returned servicemen to look after.
Your negativity floors me. I suggest you find a left wing site that appreciates your wisdom and leave us alone. To help you make that transition I have banned you.
Excellent move Kev. He has accepted that he is just a number and strangely uses the one he hates to admit was given him by a department he has no respect for…even though he didn’t have the gonads to refuse service or the trip to the funny farm.
And about bloody time to Kev, I can’t be bothered with the idiot any more.