Remember the world’s poor

By Rod Benson

Well, what a week it’s been! An uninspiring federal election campaign and an inconclusive result; the so-called “Greenslide,” and the youngest ever federal member of parliament.

As we wait for the dust to settle, and the key players to form government, it’s worth noting the call by our aid agencies to remember the world’s poorest people as we cast our votes.

Aid delivers many benefits, and Australia is well placed to contribute more.  But both major parties have made only vague and conditional statements about it.

An increase from 0.5 to 0.7 per cent of Gross National Income (or 20c in every hundred dollars we make as a nation) would directly prevent the deaths of 220,000 people each year, provide clean water and sanitation for half a million, and give 4 million children access to basic education.

That’s a vision worth chasing, and it’s still not too late for our political leaders to do something significant for the world’s poorest people this year.

Broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 29 August 2010.


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