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May Budget could be a “search for value” for NFPs says Jo Scard

2 min read

Not-for-profits may need to read between the lines to find value in tonight’s budget, according to Jo Scard, CEO of Fifty Acres, and former advisor to the Rudd and Gillard governments.  

This comes after the announcement that the government will be investing in community leaders and organisations in disadvantaged communities, while the Treasurer has also repeatedly stated that this budget won’t add to inflationary pressures.  

“Not-for-profits have seen a new direction with the Albanese government, but we will have to wait and see whether they will have much of a role in tackling the big issues within the cost of living crisis. We can certainly expect their voices to be heard,” said Scard.  

The Albanese government has already indicated that the budget will address cost-of-living pressures and assist Australia’s most disadvantaged. Made evident by Treasurer Jim Chalmers’ confirmed spending on community-led organisations and yesterday’s announcement that the government will raise the age of the single-parent payment cut-off from 8 to 14. 

Scard reiterated that the rising cost of living is at the top of everybody’s minds at the moment, including the government, and that it’s important to remember that there are many moving parts in solving this issue. 

“While we can remain optimistic, the government will need to balance a range of budget concerns. Getting philanthropy onside to investment, in addition, is vital for not-for-profit organisations in 2023.” 

“I’m looking forward to seeing the action behind the government’s core mission to redefine and reform our economy and institutions in ways that make our people and communities more resilient,” she added. 

In the wake of Federal MP Stuart Robert’s resignation, and former Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s alleged upcoming departure from politics, all eyes will be on the budget to guide these looming by-elections.  

“Labor wins governments through building a broad community consensus. Australians are feeling the pressure of the rising costs of living, but they also generally appreciate strong economic management,” said Scard. 

“This budget matters. The voting public will remember this budget.” 

With Chalmers stating that he will use the May budget to spearhead “a much bigger focus” on entrenched disadvantage in Australia’s most vulnerable communities, the treasurer alludes to a “whole of government approach” to many issues being covered within the budget.  

“I have no doubt that the power and strength of passionate individuals in the not-for-profit sector will strongly contribute to this mission,” added Scard.  

Related: Not-for-profits being heard in Canberra 

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Menchie Khairuddin is a writer Deputy Content Manager at Akolade and content producer for Third Sector News. She is passionate about social affairs specifically in mixed, multicultural heritage and not-for-profit organisations.


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