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The Coalition's schools funding policies are increasing inequality

Penny Wright 24 Sep 2014

I move that the Senate-

(a) notes recent analysis by Mr Chris Bonnor and Mr Bernie Shepherd, which demonstrated that inequality between the most advantaged and disadvantaged schools has grown since the Gonski Review was completed in 2011;

(b) recognises the Commonwealth Government's decision to proceed with only the first 4 years of the Gonski school funding arrangements falls far short of the investment needed to reverse systemic disadvantage and deepening inequality; and

(c) calls on the Government to prioritise the reduction of inequality in Australian schools.

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Greens urge caution as Libs seek to rush through terror laws

Penny Wright 23 Sep 2014

The Australian Greens have urged the Abbott Government not to rush through draconian changes to Australia's anti-terror laws. 

Responding to the draft legislation released tonight, spokesperson for Legal Affairs Senator Penny Wright said the Australian Greens would be looking at the legislation closely in the coming days.

"This legislation contains significant changes that overturn long-held values of the justice system and restrict civil liberties," Senator Wright said.

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Abbott must stand up for SA jobs and protect the RET

Australian Greens Senator for South Australia Penny Wright says Prime Minister Tony Abbott must end the uncertainty around the future of the Renewable Energy Target, as South Australia announces plans to raise its target to 50 per cent.

"The Renewable Energy Target is cutting pollution, creating jobs and will bring power bills down," Senator Wright said.

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Terror threat response must be proportionate: Greens

Penny Wright 10 Sep 2014

The Australian Greens have warned that the government's response to talk of an increased terror threat must be proportionate, amid concerns basic civil rights could be restricted.

 Australian Greens spokesperson for Legal Affairs Senator Wright said many terror measures being discussed by the government ran against expert counter-terrorism advice.

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RET threat: SA to lose $3b if renewable energy scheme scrapped

South Australia stands to lose almost $3 billion of investment if Tony Abbott dumps the Renewable Energy Target, says SA Greens Senator Penny Wright.

New figures compiled by Senator Wright show South Australia will suffer more than any other state if the popular RET is scrapped.

“South Australia cannot afford to lose the RET,” Senator Wright said. “If the RET goes, $2.9 billion of investments in clean energy will go overseas instead.

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Greens call for release of final curriculum review

Penny Wright 6 Sep 2014

The Australian Greens have called on the Abbott Government to release the final report of the Australian Curriculum review to end uncertainty for students and teachers.

Australian Greens spokesperson for schools Senator Penny Wright said Education Minister Christopher Pyne had been handed the final report by Kevin Donnelly and Ken Wiltshire last month.

"This review has been highly controversial from the get-go." Senator Wright said. "It was premature and altogether too hasty, but it's time to end the uncertainty.

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Recognising Body Image and Eating Disorders Awareness Week

Penny Wright 3 Sep 2014

I give notice that, on the next day of sitting, I will move that:

The Senate:

1. recognises September 1-7 as National Body Image and Eating Disorders Awareness Week; 

2. notes that in 2012 there were more than 913,000 people in Australia living with a clinical eating disorder, and more than 1,800 people die each year because of these deadly mental illnesses;

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Abbott’s Olympic dodge on environmental protections

Penny Wright 2 Sep 2014

The Australian Greens say the Abbott Government is shirking responsibility by waiving a new environmental impact statement for the proposed expansion of Olympic Dam.

"The Federal Government needs to do its job and stop putting the private profits of the big mining companies ahead of the environment," said South Australian Greens Senator Penny Wright.

"This is a short-sighted measure, which shows how little the Government cares about environmental protection."

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