Keeping government at the right level

Family First believes in a proper and fundamental role for government in our society. We rely on governments to provide defence, keep our borders secure and maintain the rule of law.

Family First recognises the important role of government in delivering health, education, and welfare.

We pay many different taxes to fund the activities of the government and our social security. We afford tremendous powers to governments in policing and defence, including the power to imprison. Governments and Courts exercise great powers over families, even removing children from parents when necessary.

In return for being responsible law-abiding citizens, we demand responsible and accountable government.

Family First expects government officials to act fairly, reasonably, and as responsible stewards of our taxes.

In recent decades, there has been an increasing tendency to see government as the answer to myriad social and economic problems. Every time there is an unfortunate event or incident, people turn to the government to provide an answer.

The result is ever-increasing intrusion and regulation over our family life. Even simple things like pet ownership can mean navigating dozens of federal, state, and local government regulations. We have all experienced ‘form fatigue’ from filling in masses of government paperwork.

Family First believes government should not try to run people’s lives with a ‘we know best’ attitude sometimes seen in politicians and bureaucrats. We do not wish to see governments at every level extend their reach into our lives, especially within our families.

Family First recognises that families should have the maximum control over their own decisions, especially with respect to the welfare of their children.

Family First acknowledges there is much overlap and duplication between different levels of government within Australia. We need a new Federation that better balances the different responsibilities of government. We must end the buck-passing and cost-shifting.

Funding of government is via a dizzying array of different taxes and charges. This needs to be simplified to avoid the constant squabbling over budgets.

Family First believes fiscal discipline is important. There is always a need for flexibility to meet unexpected challenges. However, after the GFC in 2008 and the recent COVID pandemic, government spending and debt are out of control.

Family First believes the tax system must be structured to benefit families who are meeting the costs of raising children. There is a societal benefit in raising the next generation that justifies government subsidy of the costs of parenthood.

Family First supports a greater level of welfare assistance for families raising children. Families should be able to live on one full-time income if that is the choice that best suits their needs.

 

Therefore:

  • Family First supports the role of government in our society but recognises there must be sensible limits.
  • Family First will support initiatives to examine proposed laws and regulations for their impact on families, including Family Impact Statements.
  • Family First does not support governments at all levels extending their reach into our lives and assuming the role proper to families to govern their own affairs.
  • Family First supports rigorous oversight of government spending and the exercise of government powers.
  • Family First will support measures to make it easy, timely, and inexpensive for citizens to have unjust government decisions reviewed or reversed.
  • Family First opposes an overall increase in the tax burden on families.
  • Family First will support audit measures to ensure every dollar of our taxes is spent responsibly, lawfully, and in a manner that is value for money.
  • Family First will advocate for a welfare and tax system that lightens the cost burden on families raising children.
  • Family First will promote income tax structures that do not disadvantage families living on one income.
  • We will advocate for a better distribution of government revenues across different levels.
  • Family First will support a thorough review of crossover between governments aimed at reducing duplication and wasteful spending.