Veterans Hubs Cut from Labor Budget

Veterans Hubs Cut from Labor Budget

02 Jun 2023

2 July 2023


Parliament has been told that there are no plans to proceed or re-assess eight veterans’ hubs, mainly earmarked for regional Australia, that were axed by the Albanese Labor Government last year.

Former Deputy Prime Minister and Shadow Minister for Veterans Affairs, Barnaby Joyce, said veterans’ communities across Australia had been hoping Labor’s second budget would re-instate the funding, and continue to rollout the network of veteran hubs across the country.

“Unfortunately, at the Parliamentary Estimates hearings this week, the government confirmed that no new sites have been identified over the next three years, beyond those announced in last year’s budget, located exclusively in Labor seats”, Mr Joyce said.

He said the 2023/24 Budget papers also confirmed that funding for veteran’s hubs would fall to zero dollars within three years.

The eight sites for veterans’ hubs axed by Labor are:

o             Mid-north coast region (NSW)

o             Wagga Wagga (NSW)

o             Mackay (Qld)

o             Wide Bay Burnet (Qld)

o             Sunshine Coast (Qld)

o             Greater Melbourne

o             Mornington Peninsula

o             Greater Sydney

“Veterans hubs partner with local communities to provide a range of services and support, because we know that those on the ground know best when it comes to veteran’s issues”, he said. “There has been no explanation from Labor as to why the sites were axed or why they won’t even be considered going forward”, Mr Joyce said.

Mr Joyce said the impact on veterans’ services was compounded by Labor’s decision to cut $15 million in funding to RSL, Soldier On and Disaster Relief Australia for veteran employment programs.

He said veterans urgently needed their voice restored at the Cabinet table where funding decisions were made.

“The first action of Prime Minister Albanese to remove the Minister for Veterans Affairs from Cabinet, must be reversed”, he said.


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