Election 2013 – A Real Opportunity for the NFP Sector
31 January 2013 at 11:33 am
The announcement of a September Federal election provides a very important and timely opportunity for the Not for Profit sector to ensure the reform agenda it needs, says David Crosbie, the CEO of the Community Council for Australia and member of the Not-for-profit Sector Reform Council.
The announcement that the next Federal election will be held on September 14 this year provides a very important and timely opportunity for the Not for Profit sector to ensure the reform agenda we need, is incorporated into the policy manifesto of the next Federal government.
The Federal election in 2010 was the first time that the major political parties provided any significant policy commitments specifically targeting the broader Not for Profit sector. The launch of the ALP policy at the Fitzroy offices of the Brotherhood of St Lawrence just prior to the election provided a central reference point for the incoming ALP government’s Not for Profit agenda.
The policy itself attracted minimal coverage in the media at the time, but it became a touchstone for government priority setting. Much of what has happened over the last two years was foreshadowed in this election statement.
The Community Council of Australia has already prepared a series of policies it intends to present to all major parties prior to the election. Our goal will be to promote a discussion across the sector and more broadly about how the Federal government can better support the Not for Profit sector, and to ensure this discussion informs the agenda of the incoming government.
All major parties will be seeking endorsement of their policies from the Not for Profit sector. Our voice is potentially a very powerful influencer in any election campaign. In many ways, the well-being of the Not for Profit sector is central to the kind of community we all aspire to live in.
We need to drive this message across the policy agendas and make sure the next government comes to power committed to implementing policies that will strengthen the sector.
The work of Pro Bono Australia, CCA and many other key groups will be central to achieving this goal. But most importantly, every Not for Profit across Australia should ensure they are players in local, regional and national policy discussions.
The Not for Profit sector in Australia has begun to develop our collective voice. In the lead up to the 2013 Federal election, we need to use our voice to ensure we actively support ourselves, our organisations, the people we serve and the communities we live in.