News + Media

Improved Electoral Legislation Amendments Passed the Senate

November 16th, 2018

Yesterday the Senate passed the Electoral Legislation Amendment (Electoral Funding and Disclosure Reform) Bill 2017. The improvements to the Bill are very welcome and it will now proceed to the House of Representatives.

Advocacy is essential to our democracy. By empowering charities to give voice to the community, we can shape better policies that address the causes of social and environmental problems. It is for this reason that our Members fund advocacy. We opposed the Bill in its original form because we were concerned it would have a harmful effect on such advocacy.

Philanthropy Australia is pleased that the Government and Opposition have worked to address our concerns. We thank them for their willingness to engage constructively, and particularly appreciate the efforts of the Minister for Finance, Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann; the Shadow Minister for Charities and Not-for-profits, the Hon Andrew Leigh MP; and the Shadow Special Minister of State, Senator the Hon Don Farrell.

We also recognise the role of the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters which conducted two inquiries into the Bill. This process led to the development of amendments addressing flaws in the Bill.

Philanthropy Australia supports the need for a robust and transparent system for regulating elections, including third parties and those who fund them. We believe that the Bill now represents this objective in a sensible and proportionate manner, and we welcome its passage through the Senate.

About Philanthropy Australia: As the peak body for giving, Philanthropy Australia uses the collective voice of the hundreds of funders, social investors, for-purpose organisations and change agents that comprise its membership community to advocate for policy and regulatory environments that enable more philanthropy with impact in Australia.

Media contact: Avril Redmond  0410166266

PDF copy of statement available here.

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