18 October 2010
GOVERNMENT SPENDS $110,000 TO TELL US WE LIKE OUR FAMILIES AND FRIENDS
It was today revealed that the Government has spent over $110,000 on a report whose key findings included that Australians are pretty happy and enjoy catching up with family and friends.
The Social Inclusion Board’s publication, entitled Social Inclusion in Australia How Australia is Faring, cost over $110,000 to produce, including nearly $29,000 for its design, artwork and printing.
The cost of the report was revealed during Senate Estimates hearings today by questions from Senator Mitch Fifield to staff from the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.
“Australian taxpayers will be pleased to know that they are footing the bill for a report that has unearthed such ground-breaking discoveries as the fact that 96% of Australians have contact with friends and family outside the household at least once a week,” Senator Fifield said.
Other key findings from the report include:
– Almost three quarters of the population were involved in at least one community group in 2006
– In 2006, a very high proportion (95%) of Australians aged 18 years and over had met socially with friends in the previous three months
– Australians are, on average, very satisfied with their lives, particularly older people and youth
– In 2006, 16% of Australians found it difficult to have a say on important issues when among family and friends
– In 2006, 7% of Australians aged 18 years and over felt unsafe or very unsafe alone at home after dark
“It cost $110,000 to discover that Australians are pretty happy, they enjoy catching up with family and friends, their family sometimes annoy them and some people are afraid after dark.”
“It is concerning that in these uncertain economic times the Government is throwing money at a report to tell us that we like spending time with our friends.”
“The report is symptomatic of a Government that wastes money,” Senator Fifield said.
“Surely this $110,000 could have been better spent elsewhere, delivering real services.”