Latest Media Releases

Greens Call for Education Ombudsman

The Education and Children’s Services Bill is currently before the state Parliament’s Upper House.

The Greens have moved that the new Act enshrine a specialist Education Ombudsman as part of the so-called ‘once in a generation’ reform.

The following quotes are attributable to Tammy Franks:

In what the Government is touting as the biggest overhaul of education legislation in a generation we are still missing an Education Ombudsman – despite the Liberal Party in Parliament having previously supported the creation of an Education Ombudsman while in Opposition.  

As they grow up, every South Australian will likely spend more than a decade in our school system and the education system is the second largest government employer: surely, we can get the best for all in that system with the protection, rigor and reform that a specialist ombudsman would bring to the table.

Reports of problems in our education system are all too common, from teacher’s union complaints about stress placed on under-resourced staff, to parents feeling pressured to vote for school closures, to seemingly an epidemic of bullying. It’s deeply disappointing that we still don’t have an independent person or body to handle an education complaint.

We have an Ombudsman for many areas of life, but not for education. Yet education is so pivotal surely it deserves the scrutiny and specialist expertise of an Education Ombudsman to address issues and identity problems before they become systemic and intractable.

There is currently no specialist independent person or body to handle complaints within the education system. We are lagging behind other OECD countries on this, where approximately two thirds of countries have an Ombudsman or agency to receive complaints related to public schools.

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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

29 January 2019

RELEASE THE REPORT, EXTEND THE ROYAL COMMISSION 

Today the Royal Commissioner will deliver his final report to His Excellency, the Governor of South Australia at 11am. The SA Greens back calls for the report to be released TODAY.

 

Quotes attributable to Tammy Franks, Greens MLC:

 

Premier Marshall must ensure the public has immediate access to this important report today. This is the first true test of his leadership for our State. South Australians fought too hard to secure the Murray Darling Basin Agreement for this report to be cut short or silenced. We have waited a year for answers and a way forward, and the public should not be kept waiting any longer.

 

However, whether we see the Royal Commission report released publicly today or after the next Marshall Cabinet meeting, the Greens will ensure that the Murray River is the first order of business when Parliament returns. That includes responding to the report and urgent consideration by State Parliament of extending the work of the Royal Commission as the Commissioner requested. To date the Marshall Government has snubbed that request. That snubbing is just not tenable.

 

The Commissioner asked for more time and adequate resources to do this job properly. It will be years before a Federal Royal Commission would report; we don’t have the luxury of that timeframe, we must continue the work this State started and work together for water security. $10,000 a day is a small price to pay for the truth we need to ensure our rivers run.

 

With each news report of the devastating impact that water theft, corruption, mismanagement, and lack of flows has on communities and on the environment, our Premier cannot afford to ignore what is happening to the lifeblood of our State. The MDB Royal Commission must be extended.

 

We are experiencing environmental collapse in the Murray Darling Basin. With multiple fish kills, all eyes are once again back on the Murray and whether Premier Marshall will stand up for our State or go to water on the Murray in defence of his NSW and federal LNP party pals.

 

Last year the SA Parliament established a Royal Commission into the Murray Darling Basin and claims of water theft, corruption, and maladministration. Not a single party stood in the way then. We recognised then the urgency and importance of such an inquiry, and that hasn’t changed. If anything, it has intensified.

 

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Greens vow ongoing debate #changethedate

GREENS VOW ONGOING DEBATE ON #CHANGETHEDATE

 

It is now fifteen months since the SA Liberal party announced a plan to force Local Governments to observe Australia Day and perform citizenship ceremonies on January 26th. Now, in the past few weeks we’ve seen their federal counterparts announce that they will do the same – on top of a ridiculous ban on boardshorts and thongs at such ceremonies. Both the State and National Liberal Governments continue to ignore the fact that January 26th marks more than 200 years of ongoing dispossession and oppression for First Nations peoples.

Quotes attributable to Tammy Franks MLC:

“For over 80 years there has been a debate on this date. That important conversation won’t be stopped by banning shorts and thongs at citizenship ceremonies, nor by somehow forcing councils to carry out ceremonies on this date.”

I’m intrigued to see how The Marshall Liberal Government had been planning to implement their election promise, anyway, given that it appears to be unconstitutional. Little wonder that 15 months after they first pledged it they have yet to present a Bill to Parliament to make it happen. 

Holding a celebration on January 26 is inherently divisive, so it’s time we changed the date. January 26 is the day in history of the second landing of the First Fleet’s and Admiral Arthur Phillip’s establishment of a penal colony in what later became NSW by the raising of a Union Jack on the land of the Eora nation back in 1788. The land then, as it is now, was Aboriginal land at the time.

By portraying that historical moment with a blinkered view, we ignore that today is the anniversary of the beginning of an invasion, and the subsequent killing, colonising, dispossessing, converting, “protecting”, assimilating and discriminating. These things cause intergenerational pain. These things are no cause for celebration.

By changing the law to stop us ever changing the date the SA Liberals will entrench that pain in our statutes.

State and federal liberals vows of legislating to enforce Australia Day activities and outfits on January 26 is just not necessary. Shutting down debate will only serve to deepen the divisions.  We need to find a date that heals not hurts, and that all Australians can celebrate.

Tammy Franks will be available for comment on Saturday the 26th at the annual Survival Day event at Semaphore Beach between11:00am – 12:00pm.

 

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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 7, 2018

GOVERNMENT AND SA-BEST HIDE YOUTH TREATMENT ORDERS BILL FROM SCRUTINY BY PARLIAMENT

 

Yesterday in debate over the controversial and thoroughly discredited Controlled Substances (Youth Treatment Orders) Bill 2018, the Government and SA-Best voted together to stop the Bill being sent to a select committee and stopped the parliament from debating why a select committee is necessary.

The Bill has faced scathing criticism and opposition from the Law Society SA, the Commissioner for Children and Young People and the Child Development Council, the Guardian for Children and Young People, the Australian Medical Association (SA Branch), SACOSS, SA Network of Drug and Alcohol Services, and the Youth Affairs Council of SA. These stakeholder and community groups made it clear to members of Parliament that, at the very least, this Bill should face proper scrutiny through the select committee process. The upper house had the numbers (supported by the Greens, Labor, and John Darley), but the Liberals and SA-Best wouldn’t allow for the suspension of standing orders so that the motion could be put.

Greens MLC Tammy Franks, who moved the motion to send this Bill to a committee yesterday, stated that:

“It’s deeply disappointing that the Government is trying to force this Bill through, despite all of the warnings and concerns of the sector that will have to deal with its implementation and consequences.

“This Bill is in contravention of the human rights of children and young people. It locks people up and forces them through treatment, even though it has been proven again and again that this doesn’t work.

“We tried to give this Government another opportunity to look at the evidence, to listen to the community, and to listen to the experts, but together with SA-Best they shut it down. Then, when asked questions about this Bill, the Minister then variously threatened, argued conflicting points, and refused to directly answer question about the Bill and resorted instead to rhetoric attacking those who simply sought the scrutiny of a Bill before then withdrawing it for debate anyway.

“If the Government and SA-Best are so confident their controversial plan to lock kids up for drug addiction treatment will work, why did they use their votes yesterday to shut down debate on simply having a committee take a look at this over the summer?

 

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UPPER HOUSE CONDEMNS CUTS TO SHINE SA

 

 

The Marshall Government lost its second procedural showdown in a week in the SA Parliament yesterday when the Upper House suspended standing orders to condemn cuts to sexual health service SHINE SA, when The Greensmotion backed by Labor, SA-Best and Advance SA against the Government’s protestations.

The motion condemned the $547,000 funding cuts made in the 18-19 Budget that will now see SHINE close their clinics in the northern and southern suburbs early next year.

Quotes attributable to Greens MLC Tammy Franks

This is the second time in a week the Government has lost control in Parliament because a Marshall Minister has a tin ear and has lost touch with community.

Peoples sexual health needs won’t go away but without SHINE to service the young and vulnerable clients some of those needs early on they will likely become far more complex and also more expensive to treat.

The Minister’s comments last night that SHINE SA should "get creative" to offset the cuts or curiously suggesting they consider using libraries as other services had done when facing cuts were disturbing.

The Minister’s claims that these cuts will be met by MBS billing was also not correct. SHINE SA has been MBS billing since 2013, that very MBS billing was already offsetting previous budget cuts under Labor.

I would say Minister Wade needs to get a second opinion on these cuts, but last week he was offered 350 ‘second opinions’ and he still hasnt listened to them. Surely the concerns last week of 350 medical professionals who signed an open letter against the SHINE cuts and asked to meet the Minister should have sparked some reaction. But even those 350 doctors are still waiting on their requested meeting with the Minister. I challenge the Minister to now meet with those doctors to hear from the medical coalface.

 

 

 

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Unfair Marshall Budget Faces Greens Fight

UNFAIR MARSHALL BUDGET FACES FIGHT  

 

Greens MLC Tammy Franks has warned that the Marshall Liberal Government will face fierce opposition in the Upper House for its plans to “privatise, penalise and profit” as outlined in today’s state budget.

 

“This budget is a kick in the guts to those who are already struggling. It is clear that this Government and its budget will only widen inequality and retreat from the provision of essential services to those who need it most.

 

“The Treasurer has today boasted he is keeping the Liberal party’s promises but the people of South Australia did not vote to privatise our prisons or SA Pathology. Coming clean that they intended to sell off seven TAFE campuses or shortchange the state Murray Darling Basin Royal Commission would not have passed any pub test before the March 17 poll and we won’t be copping it in the Parliament now,” she concluded.

 

 

 

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