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12 March 1991 - Current

Page 417
20 February 2019
ASSEMBLY Members statements Frank McGuire
Mr McGUIRE (Broadmeadows) (10:04:29): Australia is one of the world’s most prosperous countries, enjoying the record run for sustained economic growth. Such success underscores the requirement for a needs-based strategy to address inequality. Social impacts of inequality are known and understood—higher crime, health problems, mental illness, lower educational achievements and life expectancy—so a coordinated strategy to counter place-based disadvantage is in everyone’s interest. We know where crime lives. Half of it is in the same place as disadvantage. Fifty per cent of Victoria’s prisoners come from only 6 per cent of postcodes, so we need a coordinated strategy for economic and cultural development, lifelong learning and jobs targeted at postcodes of disadvantage. This is why I published Creating Opportunity: Postcodes of Hope in 2016 as a strategy to confront causes and not continue the failed model of just treating symptoms because insanity, as Einstein rightly noted, is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. We need to invest in attitude, education and opportunity, attributes that largely determine we all end up in life, not just continue to build bigger police stations, grander court houses and more prisons, because we cannot simply arrest or imprison our way out of these problems. This year marks the 20th anniversary since I founded the Global Learning Village model in Broadmeadows to coordinate the three tiers of government, business and civil society to address the price of inequality where it is needed most. Postcodes of disadvantage are bearing a greater burden and complexity. Cultural blind spots and politics must be confronted. Change is also required— (Time expired)