Cabinet Reshuffle Significant for NFPs
Tuesday, 13th December 2011 at 10:23 am
Julia Gillard’s cabinet reshuffle includes a number of moves significant for Not for Profits, and so far the sector has welcomed the changes.
The cabinet reshuffle includes bringing Housing and Homelessness under one portfolio, creating a new ministerial position for disability reform, and elevating the Minister for Mental and Ageing into Cabinet.
Robert McClelland has been named as the new Minister for Housing and Homelessness, bringing together two posting previously held by Mark Arbib (Homelessness) and Jenny Macklin (Housing).
Australians for Affordable Housing (AAH) have applauded the Government for “prioritising housing affordability and putting it back on to the national agenda.”
AAH Campaign Manager Sarah Toohey said, “The inclusion of a single Housing Minister in the Federal Cabinet, responsible for all Commonwealth housing policies and programs, is something we have been advocating for and we’re hopeful that this demonstrates that the Gillard Government is making housing affordability in Australia one of its top priorities.”
Another new position – the Minister for Disability Reform – was bestowed upon Jenny Macklin.
People with Disability Australia (PWD) said the Government has already committed to disability reform in backing the NDIS.
“By appointing a Minister for Disability Reform, the Government can now focus on the reform agenda at the elevated level it deserves”, said Therese Sands, Executive Director of PWD.
The Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, was also appointed to Cabinet, and added Social Inclusion to his portfolio, a move that was been welcomed by Aged and Community Services Australia and the Australian Medical Association (AMA).
Aged and Community Services Australia (ACSA) National President, Rob Hankins, said that this is the first time that the ageing portfolio has been elevated to Cabinet status; a clear recognition by the Government of the significance of the ageing and aged care agenda.
AMA President, Dr Steve Hambleton, said that mental health and ageing are key areas of the health portfolio that deserve the attention and advocacy of a Cabinet Minister.
“There is a lot of unfinished business in mental health and aged care and many conflicting views about the way ahead in both areas,” Dr Hambleton said.
“With an ageing population and greater awareness and understanding of mental illness, the community is calling out for more funding and resources in both sectors.
It was also announced that Brendan O'Connor will become Human Services Minister replacing Tanya Plibersek, with Plibersek to take over Nicola Roxon's Health portfolio and move into Cabinet.
Julie Collins, was named as the new Minister for Community Services, the Status of Women, Indigenous Employment and Economic Development.
Have your say on the new ministerial lineup below……