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Media Releases - March 2017

Media Release, 31 March 2017

People power stands up to racism, protects communities from government-endorsed abuse

GetUp celebrated today the success of its #HandsOff18C campaign, which last night saw victory in the Senate as the Government's changes to s.18C of the Racial Discrimination Act were voted down.

Shen Narayanasamy, GetUp's Human Rights Director said wanting to gut 18C is a long-held obsession of a few far-right loonies, who fail to see that the vast majority of Australians don't want to green-light offensive racism in our newspapers, streets and workplaces.

"Protecting 18C is a huge win for communities who face daily racism, and a loud message to the far-right that affected communities and our allies will not accept government-endorsed hate speech."

GetUp's #HandsOff18C campaign saw marginal seats across the country with large multicultural communities plastered with billboards and posters clearly targeting the Government for its failure to stand against already increasing racism in the community.

"We are proud to have worked together with Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and multicultural community leaders on HandsOff18C to mobilise communities, support submissions into the inquiry, and ensure the ALP, Greens, Nick Xenophon Team and even Jacquie Lambie voted on the side of a diverse and harmonious Australia.

"Liberal MPs like David Coleman came out to condemn the changes to 18C, because with a high multicultural population in his seat, it was clear that the Government's pandering to racism would cost them dearly at the next election.

"Hate speech supports hate action. We've seen time and again how Donald Trump's rhetoric has led to huge increases in hate crimes. It is shocking that the Turnbull Government is even countenancing waving through offensive, insulting and humiliating racial abuse at a time when actual hate crimes are increasing.

"We are committed to a long-term campaign centred on racial justice, particularly in multicultural marginal seats where this will hurt the Coalition the most. This victory shows Malcolm Turnbull that attempts to endanger our communities will see us fight back, and we will win," Said Narayanasamy.

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 30 March 2017

Northern Australia Infrastructure Fund must be used for repairing infrastructure damaged by Cyclone Debbie

GetUp has called on the Federal Government to use the Northern Australia Infrastructure Fund to restore and rebuild infrastructure smashed by Cyclone Debbie.

Paul Oosting, National Director for GetUp, said the government has a five billion dollar fund for infrastructure in the NAIF fund that should go toward rebuilding infrastructure smashed by Cyclone Debbie.

"Regional Queensland is facing billions of dollars in damage from the cyclone. Last time there was a major cyclone, Australians paid a levy to restore infrastructure.

"Currently, the government is planning to give a billion dollars to coal company to build a rail line that no one will build and big banks won't touch, because it is a bad investment.

"These funds should be spent on infrastructure that has been hit hard by Cyclone Debbie, not Adani's coal mine.  

"Roads, hospitals, schools, bridges, airports and public buildings are surely more important to repair than the propping up a debt laden company.  

"Not only is handing Adani a billion dollars a terrible waste of taxpayers money, mining and burning coal is the leading cause of global warming, which will make cyclones more intense.

"The majority of Australians are opposed to Northern Australia Infrastructure Funds being spent on a coal company's dangerous mine.

"We don't even know which of Adani's shell companies the loan will go to.

"70,000 Australians and counting are in need of dire help. It's up to Prime Minister Turnbull to re-direct the misguided use of funds to where they are needed most," said Paul Oosting.

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 28 March 2017

Diverted Profits Tax: Huge win for GetUp members and a step in cracking down on corporate tax cheating

GetUp has applauded the Turnbull Government for finally doing something serious to curb corporate tax cheating, by introducing a Diverted Profits Tax that was passed by the Senate last night.

Natalie O'Brien, GetUp's Economic Fairness Campaign Director, said the tax would generate $100 million a year in direct revenue, but many hundreds of millions of dollars more as corporations actually pay their tax to avoid the Diverted Profits Tax.

"We welcome this move by government who are finally listening to the Australian people, who are sick and tired of multinationals robbing our schools and hospitals to line their own pockets.

"This much-needed policy will help stop corporations sending profits overseas to cheat our tax system. This is a serious step to ending the massive rort.

"It's a pity that at the same time as cracking down, the government is rewarding tax cheating multinationals who are already ripping Australians off by cutting the corporate tax rate.

"A Diverted Profits Tax was one of the two key recommendations in GetUp's 'Closing the Caribbean Connection', released in April 2016.

"This is not the end of corporate tax cheating – far from it. Other recommendations in our report are also critical.

"We must deal with tax cheating by dirty energy companies that they perpetrate through shonky debt loading arrangements. Until the Turnbull Government takes action to shut down these loopholes as well, GetUp members will be keeping up the pressure.

GetUp's members are deeply concerned about corporate tax cheating, and they took action to force the government's hand on this matter," Said O'Brien.

  • 78,712 GetUp members signed a petition calling for action on corporate tax cheating
  • 1,713 GetUp members chipped in to fund research into corporate tax cheating that led to the report that recommended the Diverted Profits Tax
  • 4,261 GetUp members emailed the report to their local MP calling for action in the budget
  • 1,285 chipped in for a national TV and online ad campaign calling for action in the budget against corporate tax cheating
For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 27 March 2017

The government inquiry into the broken power market is just political until the government is prepared to stand up to price gouging power companies

GetUp welcomed the government's caving to pressure to finally investigate the big power companies for price-gouging. But it warned that the inquiry must result in action to regulate prices, stamp down on rips offs and fix the broken energy market that was pushing up prices.

Sam Regester said the first thing the government needed to do was stop blaming renewable energy and promoting more gas, on behalf of the big coal and gas companies who are currently setting the government's agenda.

"One of the big problems is deregulation, as the companies are allowed to charge whatever they can get away with.  

"GetUp's Dirty Power Games report found that in deregulated markets, basically those outside the ACT, big energy companies are charging two or three times what they are in regulated markets.

"These charges aren't for generating power. They are simply for acting as a go-between from generators to customers.

"Unless the government is prepared to stand up to these companies, they're not going to bring down prices on their own.

"Even if the ACCC discovers all this well known information and reports to the government the well established problem, it remains to be seen whether the government has the temerity to do anything about it.

"If past behaviour is any indication of future action, we can expect the government to continue to defend the broken system, protect the system that sees power companies charge what they like and continue to attack the increased competition from renewable energy, then nothing will change.

"Our fear is that the government will continue to attack renewable energy, defend the broken power system that allows big power companies to price gouge and push the interests of coal and gas companies at the expense of our power bills.

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 27 March 2017

Poll: 70% Australians want families separated by offshore detention reunited in Australia

A new reachtel poll released by GetUp reveals 70 percent of Australians believe that families split between Australia and detention camps on Manus Island and Nauru should be reunited in Australia.

GetUp has released the poll on the same day that the daughter of a Rohingya refugee named Nayser Ahmed, who has been detained on Manus Island for almost four years, visits Canberra to meet with politicians from all sides of parliament, asking them to bring her father to Australia.

Zaharah (pseudonym for legal reasons), lives in the suburbs of Western Sydney with her siblings and her mother. This week, her teachers granted her leave from studying her HSC so she can meet with politicians in Canberra to tell them about her family's situation.

"I feel a bit nervous about meeting the politicians. But I really want to tell them about my situation. I really want to ask them to bring my dad here," said Zaharah

"I miss dad the most at dinner time. We would always eat dinner together as a family – we rarely missed one for as long as I can remember. Now, dinner time is hard."

"I really hope they decide to bring my dad here. He's missed my little brother's first day of school in Australia. He has a little granddaughter who was born in Sydney that he hasn't been able to meet yet. I hope they bring my dad here soon."​, Zaharah added.  

"Zaharah's family is one example of the families separated between Australia and the camps on Manus Island and Nauru. While these families do their best to rebuild their lives in Australia, their husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, sisters, or brothers continue to be held in offshore detention, said Matthew Phillips, Human Rights Campaign Co-Director at GetUp.

"The details of the Turnbull government's US deal are still unclear, but we know it does not currently provide for families that have been rebuilding their lives in Australia to be reunited with their loved ones should they be resettled to the US from Manus Island or Nauru.  

"After years of painful separation, they are now faced with terrible uncertainty. Families like Zaharah's have been part of our community for at least four years now. They're attending school, working, making new friends, and doing their best to get on with their lives in the hope that one day they will be reunited. But rather than reuniting these families, the US deal will make that separation permanent.

"Today's poll shows that the vast majority of Australians agree that families belong together.

"The Turnbull government must act to provide safety for all those currently held on Manus Island and Nauru - that must include reuniting families like Zaharah's in Australia, so that they can rebuild their lives together" said Phillips.   

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 24 March 2017

"This isn't going to end well": GetUp responds to Turnbull Government announcement of Robodebt 2.0 on pensioners

GetUp has slammed the Turnbull Government's new plan to mass-harvest financial data from pensioners and older Australians, calling it "Centrelink Robodebt 2.0".

Natalie O'Brien, GetUp Economic Fairness Campaigns Director, said the Turnbull Government should fix the Centrelink mess it's already made, instead of starting up a new scheme to harass and intimidate everyday Australians on income support.

"The Turnbull Government's got a track record on data matching – and it's terrible.

"Their Centrelink robodebt scheme has been a complete disaster from day one.

"Up to 90% of the debt letters are wrong, and hundreds of thousands of Australians have already suffered.

"Instead of fixing that mess, they want to roll out Robodebt 2.0 to rort pensioners too? It's unbelievable.

"The appeals system is near-impossible to navigate and it can't be done over the counter. That leaves many Australians without the tools to challenge cuts to their livelihoods online.

"This government's priorities are upside down. As they launch fresh attacks on everyday people, they allow 679 of the largest corporations to get away with paying $0 tax.

"Malcolm Turnbull should stop his government's war on everyday people and turn his attention to the huge tax-dodging corporations robbing the public purse of billions of dollars each year.

"This government seems intent on waging war against everyday people. You can see it with their cuts to income support, their cuts to penalty rates, and now this bullying of pensioners.  

"After the fiasco that continues to be robodebt round one, the fate of our pensioners simply cannot be left to this Government's robodebt 2.0," O'Brien said.

Anyone who has received a debt notice from Centrelink and believes it may be an error can easily launch an appeal in less than 5 minutes at

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 21 March 2017

Revealed on GetUp TV: Turnbull Government's proposed changes to 18C are dead in the water

Nick Xenophon has revealed today on GetUp's Facebook Live that the Government's proposed changes to 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act will die in the Senate.

Without support from either the ALP, the Greens or Nick Xenophon, the changes to 18c will not become law.

Senator Xenophon said:

"We… do not support any changes to the language of Section 18C.

"Opening this up is unnecessary and divisive.

"I think It's part of the fabric of Australia being a great multicultural tolerant country. Changing the law would be a backwards step.

Paul Oosting, National Director of GetUp interviewed Senator Xenophon on Facebook live this afternoon, where the South Australian confirmed he and his party will oppose moves to amend the Racial Discrimination Act.  

"We welcome NXT, the Greens and Labor's commitment to protect people against racist hate speech.

"However, even if this fails, the government's intention is clear, and we will stand with Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, and multicultural communities to demonstrate to the coalition that a refusal to stand up to racism costs votes.

"Today, with much fanfare and ado, the government sent a clear signal that it endorses racist hate speech. But now the majority of the Australian senate have banded together to stand up against racism.

"For it to die in the Senate is humiliating.

"The Prime Minister should be protecting all Australians. But he can't even protect himself from the interests of a fringe, hard-right section of the Liberal Party who want to pursue a personal crusade over real policies that will help everyday people.

"Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and members of multicultural communities deserve better than this.

"Multicultural leaders roundly condemned the Liberal Party's association with One Nation in the WA state election, and the government risks a similar backlash by attacking laws that protect these communities from pressing on with licensing hate speech," said Mr Oosting.

The video is available here

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 21 March 2017

GetUp readies campaign as Turnbull Government endorses racial hate-speech

GetUp has condemned Malcolm Turnbull's decision to push forward with changes to Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act as an attack on the safety and security of Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, and multicultural communities.

Matthew Phillips, Human Rights Director at GetUp said the Prime Minister should be protecting all Australians, and that the push to change 18C would see GetUp campaign to ensure the changes cost the Coalition votes as multicultural communities withdraw their support at election time.

"We will be running a campaign in multicultural marginal seats to ensure that there is a price to be paid by the Coalition for this endorsement of racial hate-speech.

"Multicultural leaders roundly condemned the Liberal Party's association with One Nation in the WA state election, and the government risks a similar backlash by attacking laws that protect these communities from hate speech.

"By removing 'offend' and 'insult' from the language of the law, and replacing it with 'harass' the Coalition is granting permission to those that want to intimidate and degrade fellow Australians.

"A full Parliamentary inquiry made no recommendations to change 18C. There is no substantial pressure from the community to do so either. This attack only serves the interests of a fringe, hard-right section of the Liberal Party who want to pursue a personal crusade over real policies that will help everyday people.

"Malcolm Turnbull has continued to appease the hard-right of his party and the likes of One Nation - but the safety of Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, and multicultural communities should not be used as a bargaining chip by a Prime Minister afraid to stand up to his own party.

"This is a country where almost a third of voters are from a non-Anglocentric background. For most Australians, there's little demand for a right to be a bigot.

"The Coalition is trying to make short-term gains from Trump-style divisiveness, but we are determined to show that there are long-term electoral costs associated with victimising minorities.

Voters in multicultural marginals are repulsed by these changes, as they were by the Liberal's preference deal with One Nation in WA, and the association of government MPs like George Christensen with hard right groups such as Reclaim Australia and the Q Society.  

"GetUp will continue to stand with communities affected by racism as they reject these changes to Section 18C. We are committed to a long-term campaign centred on racial justice, particularly in multicultural marginal seats where this will hurt the Coalition the most.

"This is a compromise on people's safety, and that's where no government should be willing to compromise", said Phillips.   

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 18 March 2017

Wannabe PM Dutton promotes GetUp power to create change

GetUp today welcomed Peter Dutton's continued recognition of GetUp's people power approach to bring pressure on corporations and governments to pursue changes that improve Australia.  

For the second time this week, Minister Peter Dutton claimed Qantas, and other Australian companies lobbying for the right of all people to get married, of "not wanting to get on the wrong side of GetUp".

Paul Oosting, National Director of GetUp called on Minister Dutton to do a better job actually representing the interests of millions of Australian who want to see marriage equality.

"If Dutton wants to be Prime Minister, attacking anyone who supports marriage equality, even his mates in Big Business, is a dumb way to go about it.

"It's pretty derisive of someone who claims to be a representative of the people to deny their rights because of a dated ideology.

"Most Australians want marriage equality. Dutton and the hard right of his party are running a campaign to deny people their rights. We have no doubt that ultimately this is a losing fight.

"Having a notorious advocate for inhumane treatment of people seeking safety in Australia, the guy who ushered in record health cuts, and the didn't even turn up to the apology to the Stolen Generation, promoting our organisation can't hurt us.

"We're glad he gets the power of people to create meaningful change.

"We assume big business in Australia are backing marriage equality in Australia because it is the right thing for their customers and their staff.

"It's hard to see someone creating a more ideal candidate to target at the next Federal election, as he is clearly spooked by our power", said Mr Oosting.

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358  

Media Release, 16 March 2017

With a real plan to go renewable, the future can be bright and snowy

Prime Minister Turnbull's Snowy Hydro project could unlock affordable clean power for thousands of homes - if, and only if - the government comes up with a credible plan to upgrade Australia to 100% renewable energy.

Miriam Lyons, Environmental Justice Director for GetUp said the project could be an important part of an orderly shift away from dirty fuels, but only if the Prime Minister stops cheerleading for coal and gas and starts embracing wind and solar as the cheapest, cleanest energy technologies to replace Australia's ageing coal-fired power stations.

"After walking out of a meeting with big gas, it's looking like Prime Minister Turnbull is beginning to understand we need to go straight from coal to renewables, with gas now too expensive to fill in the gaps.

"But it needs to happen now. If we don't get on with building more wind and solar, there won't be enough generation to run an expanded Snowy Hydro scheme, because burning dirty fuels to power a clean storage solution is a plainly ridiculous idea.

"The Turnbull Government spent years trying to abolish ARENA, the very agency that will now be helping to build this Snowy Hydro 2.0 project. It's thanks to strong campaigning by members of GetUp and other community groups that ARENA is still around to help with projects like this.

"Snow Hydro 2.0 shows that ARENA is capable of delivering nation-building innovation, and that investing in clean energy and storage is now the only viable option for fixing our broken electricity market.

"It's great to see the Turnbull Government finally picking up on Australian's excitement about the future of energy - batteries in people's homes, helping households save energy, solar thermal with storage and pumped hydro schemes across the country. Now we urgently need them to deliver a credible climate and energy plan to support it.

"We're looking forward to seeing more detail on this plan. It will be crucial that the scheme doesn't increase Snowy Hydro's impact on fragile river systems and the local environment.

"And federal and state government owners should pledge to run Snowy Hydro 2.0 in the public interest to push down wholesale prices, rather than joining in on the Enron-style price-gouging antics we've seen from gas companies in recent years," said Lyons.

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 14 March 2017

South Australia: Premier should double down on solar and storage and show the gas lobby the door

GetUp has welcomed Premier Jay Weatherill's decision to build Australia's largest battery for wind and solar power storage in South Australia and take a hands-on role in Australia's broken electricity market, but said that subsidising new gas exploration is a reckless waste of public money.

Miriam Lyons, Environmental Justice Director said solar and storage prices have been plummeting while greedy gas companies have been ripping off South Australians, making the new $150 million renewable technology fund the Premier's biggest no-brainer.

"The decision to build Australia's largest battery could propel South Australia into a safe energy future and showcase South Australia as a world leader in renewables.

"Solar and storage is already cheaper than gas as a source of secure, 24-hour power. The Premier's decision to back batteries is welcome but he's failed to see that the writing is on the wall for fossil fuels.

"The Premier's commitment of $150million to clean energy is great vote of confidence in a cleaner, cheaper solution to the mess greedy gas companies have made of South Australia's power market. We hope this will be followed in June by a decision to back solar and storage as the supplier of the remaining 75% of the government's energy use.

"But the Premier's leadership on renewable energy is undermined by his even bigger bet on expensive and polluting gas - a whopping $360million for a single gas plant and public subsidies for damaging gas extraction.

"Coal and gas companies have left South Australia stranded and giving gas companies the power to frack wherever they like isn't going to change that. It's just going to lead to more damaged land and water, more divided communities and more gas profits shipped offshore."

"The Elon Musk twitter storm this week showed us just how much excitement there is about batteries, and how many clean energy companies are lining up around the block to use modern technology to solve South Australia's power problems.

"Premier Weatherill can still put an end to the greedy, land-destroying behaviour that gas companies have gotten away with for too long, and revoke the decision to use public money  to help fossil fuel moguls run wild," said Lyons.

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 14 March 2017

Adani's taxpayer rip off continues: shell companies used to hide assets and enrich Adani family

Indian coal miner Adani is set to rip off Australians through it's use of tax havens , shell companies and other shadowy financial arrangements that will hide assets, and make it harder for anyone but the powerful Adani family to benefit from the dangerous Carmichael coal mine.

This follows evidence the company has avoided tax, will refuse to pay rent on its Townsville jobs hub, and was given billions of litres of free water by the Queensland government.   

The Indian family owned company is also putting its hand out for a billion dollar handout from the Australian taxpayer.

Sam Regester, Environmental Justice Campaign Director at GetUp said revelations Adani uses shell companies to hide assets and personally enrich the Adani family are troubling for a project that's received so many government handouts.

"The Turnbull Government should not be giving special treatment to a company that is directing profits to their pockets by dipping into the public purse.

"Weak governments have given the company too much power and too much special treatment.

"All multinational companies should be paying their taxes, paying rent and paying for the water they use.

"But we keep learning more and more about the dodgy and possibly corrupt practices being pursued by Adani. Using shell companies to hide taxes and personally enrich the companies should be a red flag for the government.

"We cannot trust this company. It is frankly disgusting how local, state and federal governments are falling over themselves to put the interests of Adani ahead of the interests of their constituents.

"People in Queensland pay their taxes, they pay for their water and they pay rent on their properties. This company is out of control.

"For every job they create, we could lose a thousand jobs in farming or tourism from the impact to our water or the Great Barrier Reef.

"It's about time we put the interests of people in Queensland ahead of the interests of a dangerous multinational company who refuses to play by the rules," said Regester.

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 10 March 2017

GetUp! unites with multicultural communities to ensure voter backlash for One Nation/ Libs preference deal

GetUp! has united with peak multicultural community leaders in the lead up to the Western Australian state election after Premier Colin Barnett's decision to do a preference deal with One Nation.

Barnett faces a growing backlash from multicultural community members, who make up a significant chunk of key marginal seats in the WA election. After the initial call by Muslim leaders to call on community members to penalise the Barnett Government for their deal, Barnett now faces a backlash from leaders across WA's large multicultural communities, supported by GetUp.

Shen Narayanasamy, Human Rights Campaign Director, GetUp quotes:

"GetUp! is committed to a long-term, widespread campaign aimed at helping communities who experience racism come together to use their numbers and the power of their collective voice at election time," said Shen Narayanasamy, GetUp's Human Right Director.

"If you cosy up with people who directly threaten people from multicultural communities, who endanger their very existence, there's a price to pay at the ballot box.

"We will be using a comprehensive digital strategy, both local and federal, to remind communities about their power to push back against racist and divisive policy platforms.

"Safety and security are any community's most urgent issues.  Any party that trades this away for cheap, short term political wins will learn that endorsing racism costs votes.

Ramdas Sankaran OAM, President, Ethnic Communities Council of WA quotes:

"The crucial issue is safety for our communities.  Racism is a serious problem on the streets, at school and in the workplace.  We won't support anyone who contributes to this, or anyone who deals with parties like One Nation which aim to abolish multiculturalism."

"I commend the ALP, the Nationals and Greens WA for explicitly ruling out preference deals with One Nation. The Liberal Party's refusal to do likewise is abhorrent and unconscionable."

"It's astounding that Premier Barnett can in the same breath claim that the Liberal Party values inclusiveness and justify his party's deal with One Nation, which seeks to abolish multiculturalism and vilifies religious and ethnic minorities"

"On this basis alone the Liberal Party does not deserve the support of ethnic minority Western Australians and all those who value an inclusive society that values fairness and equity."

Further information

The seats targeted by the extensive campaign are:
Electorate Sitting Margin %Non-English Speaking Background %Overseas Born
Morley Ian Britza 4.7% 33% 43%
Southern River Peter Abetz 10.8% 22% 40%
Balcatta Chris Hatton 7% 33% 40%
Perth Eleni Evangel 2.9% 27% 47%
Riverton Mike Nahan 12% 28% 45%
Mount Lawley Michael Sutherland 9% 25% 40%
Belmont Glenys Godfrey 1.1% 21% 40%
West Swan Rita Saffioti 0.9% 24% 35%
Bicton Liberal (new electorate) - 10% 27%

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 10 March 2017

Politicians need to clean up their mess so people can trust them again

The Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters report into foreign donations once again highlights the problem that politicians refuse to fix - secretive dark money flowing into our parliament while making it harder for people to engage with the political process.

Paul Oosting, National Director at GetUp, said it was about time political parties adopted better laws around political donations but they were trying to deflect the attention onto people powered groups.

"We need a ban on offshore cash to political parties.

"Australia is one of the few countries in the world without a ban on foreign donations to political parties.

"We know that a full 66% of the Liberal Party's income leading up to the 2016 federal election was completely untraceable Dark Money.

"Multinational companies clearly have too much power over our politicians, or why else would we be handing Adani a billion dollars of taxpayers money to build a coal mine. We have to reduce this sort of special treatment.

"The Coalition have sought to use a process that could be used to clean up their mess to blame everyone else for their poor performance at the election.

"The vast majority of GetUp's funding comes from everyday Australians.  They generously donate because they are fed up with the secretive and way many politicians act.

"If the Liberal Party seek to misuse their power to attack advocacy groups, organisations millions of regular Australians support, then they clearly don't get why people are losing confidence in their ability to make decisions that benefit their lives.

"This is just another example of the Liberal Party putting their mates in big businesses interests ahead of the interests of ordinary Australians, people who they are either extorting money through Centrelink, pushing up their power prices by attacking renewable energy or cutting funding to their school or hospital," said Mr Oosting.

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 9 March 2017

Alan Tudge, have you no shame?

GetUp today slammed Human Services Minister Alan Tudge for gleefully claiming there is "nothing wrong" with the Turnbull Government's notorious robo-debt scheme that's been making life hell for hundreds of thousands of Australians.

Mark Connelly, GetUp Campaigns Director, said it beggared belief that Minister Tudge could openly defend the robo-debt letter scheme that has been demonstrated to be fundamentally broken.

"Over 72,000 GetUp members signed a petition demanding an immediate end to the robo-debt threats and thousands more have emailed their local MPs and written letters to newspapers.

"And a massive 3,568 GetUp members chipped in to fund FraudStop – a free service that allows anyone to easily navigate bypass the Turnbull Government's frustrating appeals process and challenge a fake debt notice online in less than five minutes.

"Every day we receive new success stories of people using FraudStop to get their fake debt claims cleared.

"The government can dress this up however they like, it doesn't hide the plain truth that their system is broken and thousands of debts have been found false and reduced to $0.

"If you harass and threaten people with debts they don't owe, that's called extortion.

"If you misuse the power of government in this way to attack working people when 679 of the biggest corporations aren't even paying any tax, that's called bastardry.

"And it will cost them votes," Mr Connelly said.

Over 1,300 debt-threat recipients have already used GetUp's FraudStop service to submit  formal debt-threat appeals to Centrelink.

Peter from NSW told us after using Fraudstop: "After struggling to fight the debt myself since November, you all were able to get my debt eliminated in less than a month and I am over the moon.

I have not received any correspondence from Centrelink that my debt has been eliminated, but logging into my MyGov account it displays that I do not have any outstanding money owing as opposed to showing over $2000 since November.

Words cannot describe how thankful I am and how much this will affect my current situation."

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 6 March 2017

GetUp is coming for the Big Banks

GetUp is today launching a major campaign against some of Australia's most hated moguls - the Big Four banks. More than 5000 Australians have signed a pledge telling the banks it's customers or fossil fuels.

Anthony Gough, Market Impact Director at GetUp said that since 2008 the Big Four banks have pumped more than $70 billion into the fossil fuel industry, bank-rolling dangerous, land-destroying mines and putting the interests of everyday Australians last.

The Turnbull Government has repeatedly protected The Big Four - ANZ, NAB, Westpac and the Commonwealth Bank - offering them massive tax cuts and failing to deliver a commission into the shady behaviour that costs Australians millions.

"People already hate the Big Banks. In times of financial stress, big banks lean on Australians - charging extraordinary fees that have no basis in reality, and are designed to rip off those that need it most.

"They're tied to dirty projects, using Australian's money to bankroll corrupt coal mines like Adani that wreck our environment, instead of making decent investments in our futures.

"The Big Four banks are the financial engine room of the fossil fuel industry. They're making billions of dollars charging interest on home loans, and people are sick and tired of it going up in black smoke.

"Market Forces figures show that a mere 29 customers pulling out of their home loan with the Commonwealth Bank would cost them the $5.4 million they're making by loaning money to reef-destroying LNG projects."

"And we've already got thousands of Australians lined up right behind them, ready to quit banks and the bad projects they're backing.

"NAB is the only one of the 4 that has ruled out funding the Adani mine - the giant pollution bomb about to go off in Queensland, with a track record of ripping people off and taking water from farmers.

"The rest of the Big Four need to step up and do the same.

"We've already seen consumer power in action - since GetUp launched it's Better Power campaign, over 18,000 Australians have switched to a cleaner power company, knocking an estimated $60 million off the balance sheet of big polluting power companies.

"It's now or never - the banks need to dump the coal or customers are going to start running for the doors.

"It's a system that works for the wealthy in the fossil fuel industry, but penalises everyday Australians. But pollution is going to start costing profits," Said Gough.

For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358

Media Release, 1 March 2017

Australia's dirty companies that emit more pollution than entire countries

AGL, EnergyAustralia, Stanwell and Origin are single-handedly pumping out more carbon pollution than entire countries, according to the The National Greenhouse and Energy 2015-16 pollution report.

Anthony Gough, Market Impacts Director for GetUp said big power companies are ripping people off, price gouging and unleashing dangerous levels of pollution into the air and it's time the Turnbull Government finally stood up to them.

"The big power companies have been talking a big game on transitioning away from fossil fuels towards renewables,  all the while massively increasing the pollution they're pumping into our air.

"AGL has spent huge money on marketing campaigns about a clean energy future, all the while hiking their carbon emissions by an unbelievable 120%.

"The fossil fuel industry has received plenty of handouts from the Turnbull Government this year - including $7.7billion in subsidies.

"These dirty companies are running amok with our energy future. Malcolm Turnbull needs to pull the plug on them.

"Big energy companies in Australia produced 44 times more pollution than the Democratic Republic of Congo - while Australia has a population only one third of the size.

"The big energy companies themselves know that we have to transition away from dirty fuels and into renewables. It's time to stop talking and start doing.

"The transition is here and the longer Malcolm Turnbull supports big energy to appease the coal lobby, the more pollution we have to breathe and the longer the health risks go ignored," Said Gough

Top 5 carbon polluters in 2015-16 were:

  1. AGL
  2. EnergyAustralia
  3. Stanwell
  4. Origin
  5. International Power
  • AGL emits more carbon pollution than 127 entire countries, including New Zealand, Ireland, Denmark, Norway, Sri Lanka
  • EnergyAustralia emits more carbon pollution than 108 entire countries.
  • Origin emits more CO2 than 100 entire countries.

  • For more information call Kirsti Gorringe on 0431 047 358