Turnbull Government's unfair cuts

14 June 2017

DR CHALMERS (Rankin) (13:48): The first weekend in July will tell us absolutely everything we need to know about the Turnbull government.

On the Saturday, the PM will give millionaires a $16,400 tax cut.

On the Sunday, the next day, nearly 700,000 workers will cop a pay cut. These are the twin obsessions of those opposite.

Only a Prime Minister as out of touch as this one could possibly think that is fair. He would not have a clue how important penalty rates are to making ends meet for hundreds of thousands of Australians.

My community will be hit much, much harder than most. My electorate is in the top 10 most affected, with 13,350 workers in the retail food and accommodation industries affected by these pay cuts.

It is no accident that we have record low wage growth and record high underemployment and precarious work under those opposite. This is what they want for this country. They want the top end of town to thrive while working people struggle.

They want tax cuts for the powerful and pay cuts for the vulnerable. It is all part of the Thatcherite trickle-down fantasy on that side of the House.

They could step in and prevent these penalty cuts if they wanted to. The fact that they will not says everything about a government of the top end of town, by the top of town and for the top end of town.

And, if they prevail here, who knows where they will stop and which workers they will attack next.