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Bridget Clinch, Veterans Party candidate for Brisbane

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Bridget Clinch

To address the questions:

  1. We don’t support cuts to community legal centres.
  2. We would take on board the findings of the report.  Additionally we would work with the government to implement reforms that see orders cross state lines and be nationally enforceable.  We’d support all initiatives that protect vulnerable people without delay.
  3. Again, we respect expert consensus and reports in this regard and would work with campaigns such as the Never Alone campaign and organisations such as yours to establish and attempt to legislate best practice.
  4. Iwould expect that there would be either a body representing people with disabilities in this regard, or a legal service that has some expertise.  If there is not then some consultation needs to be done to see how best to tackle this.  I was at the opening of the LGBTI legal service here in QLD, I remember Justice Kirby talking about the fact that rich politicians and lawyers didn’t easily grasp the fact that lower socioeconomic status people have different legal needs to them, he said something along the lines of that poor people aren’t just rich people without money.  This theme stuck with me, every unique group does need to be catered to to make sure that no one slips through the cracks in the system.
  5. Our policy supports ‘bridging the gap’ but doesn’t go in to specifics to do with legal support, it is mainly in education.  However we would support this as all populations deserve legal support when they need it.

We are a new party, however we are coming from a solid position and we don’t have corporate donors, we get to actually represent the electorate and do what we say.  Whilst it is difficult to get in to the nitty gritty at this time in the campaign, we have an overview of where we stand on issues out in our policy document.  I don’t want us to be seen as trying to be populist in saying we don’t support any cuts to health, education and social programs like this, but the reality is that there are many billions slipping through the fingers of both parties in government that remains not addressed.  For example the cost of maintaining Manus and Nauru is over a billion dollars a year, to imprison around 2000 refugees.  We allow tax rorting to go unchecked, we give subsidies, exemptions and rebates to massively profitable companies including mining and energy.  These I see as low hanging fruit and want to push the government hard on reeling in those billions, to put back in to the right places in society for the good of everyone, not just the 1%ers.

I hope I’ve addressed your questions, I don’t want to get too stuck in the mud addressing details that are really in your ballpark and not mine as a potential federal member.  I like to think that I’m coming from a socially aware place, that I accept expert and scientific consensus and am totally against inequality.  I am confident that I would be voting on bills in a way that would support organisations like yours.