Jesuit Social Services believes that every person living in Australia should have access to the opportunities in life that will enable them to flourish – to complete their education, to get a job, to access safe and affordable housing, to raise their children in safe communities and to see the next generation thrive.

We recently responded to the Senate Inquiry into the Extent and Nature of Poverty in Australia and in this submission, rather than concentrate on income-based measures of poverty, we focus on broader concepts of disadvantage and equity to more fully examine the web of challenges that continue to limit life outcomes for too many people across Australia.

Summary of our recommendations:

  • Address the underlying drivers of violence and other harmful behaviours by boys and men by investing in research, workforce capacity building, and early interventions to positively shift cultures and attitudes.
  • Resource place-based solutions to support thriving, resilient and climate-just communities.
  • Commit to full access to sustainable employment, including by guaranteeing opportunities for young people, fully utilising the skills of migrants and refugees, and addressing cultural issues related to the safety of women and other minority groups.
  • Increase investment in safe, secure and sustainable social housing and provide supported housing options for people with multiple and complex needs.
  • Prevent contact with the justice system by raising the age of criminal responsibility from 10 to 14 years and developing therapeutic responses for children in out-of-home care.
  • Resource a National Justice Reinvestment Body with Aboriginal leadership and expertise to divert funds away from the justice system towards community-led and evidence-based solutions as recommended by Change the Record.

Read the submission