A national advertising campaign opposing the early introduction of the Government’s income tax cuts will begin airing on SKY and commercial television this week. The campaign is being supported by more than 40 prominent Australians, including:

• Bernie Fraser, former governor of the Reserve Bank
• Stephen Grenville, former deputy governor of the Reserve Bank
• John Hewson AM, former Liberal Opposition Leader
• Cassandra Goldie, CEO of ACOSS
• Professor Peter Doherty, Nobel Laureate in Medicine
• Michael Keating AC, Visiting Fellow, Australian National University and former Secretary to the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.
• Professor Patricia Apps, University of Sydney Law School.

The advertisement builds on Australia Institute research which shows the tax cuts will not boost the economy and will widen inequality in Australia. “Cutting taxes for already wealthy Australians will undermine the long-term strength of our public services, like healthcare and education, while doing very little to stimulate economic growth,” said Ben Oquist, Executive Director of The Australia Institute. “Tax is an investment in our society. Those calling for tax cuts today will be calling for service cuts in the future.”

Bernie Fraser, former governor of the Reserve Bank said “The unfolding COVID pandemic is a stark reminder to all policy makers of two fundamental truths: that while many of us work and spend in economies, we all live and die in communities; and, secondly, the most vulnerable groups in those communities are always hit the hardest in major crises like this pandemic.” Stephen Grenville, former deputy government of the Reserve Bank said “We’ll need substantial stimulus for an extended period. Cutting top-rate income tax would be a weak stimulus which undermines the equitable and progressive tax structure we‘ll need when the COVID crisis is over.”

John Hewson AM, former Liberal Opposition Leader said “The LNP naively hope tax cuts are good politics, but they won’t be as they increase inequality and fail to ensure job security and increasing wages with our economy still struggling to exit recession.”

Cassandra Goldie, CEO of ACOSS, said “More tax cuts today mean service cuts tomorrow. The next stage of legislated tax cuts costs $12 billion a year and reduces tax for people on $130,000 or more by $47 per week. Most low and middle income earners get nothing. Yet it’s only low income-earners that will spend most of any Government stimulus. Instead, it’s time to #RaisetheRateforGood by permanently increasing Jobseeker payments.”

The Australia Institute’s television commercial can be viewed here. It will air on SKY and commercial television.