Australia and United States – How they compare

Oct 15, 2012

Q. How do you think Australia compares to the United States on the following: 

 

Total better in Australia

Total better in USA

A lot better in Australia

A little better in Australia

About the same

A little better in USA

A lot better in USA

Don’t know

Access to health care

82%

5%

61%

21%

8%

3%

2%

5%

Standard of living for ordinary working people

74%

7%

40%

34%

13%

5%

2%

6%

Access to jobs

70%

5%

34%

36%

17%

4%

1%

7%

Public safety

66%

4%

32%

34%

22%

3%

1%

7%

Wages

64%

9%

34%

30%

17%

7%

2%

10%

Work rights

63%

7%

34%

29%

18%

5%

2%

13%

Education standards

47%

16%

20%

27%

27%

12%

4%

10%

Rights of individuals

44%

14%

19%

25%

34%

10%

4%

8%

Opportunities to succeed in business

35%

22%

14%

21%

32%

16%

6%

12%

International influence

17%

56%

8%

9%

19%

21%

35%

9%

The vast majority of respondents think health care, standard of living, access to jobs, public safety, wages and work rights are better in Australia than in the US.

They are somewhat less certain about education standards, individual rights and opportunities to succeed in business – but still think these are better in Australia.

Only on international influence did respondents favour the US.

Major spending initiatives of the federal government

Oct 2, 2012

Q. The federal government has recently announced a number of major spending initiatives on health, education and defence reforms that will involve substantial investment over the next few years.  For each of the reforms as they are described below, please indicate whether you believe it should be implemented or not

 

Implement the reform if it means higher taxes (including corporate and mining taxes) and cuts in other areas

Do not implement the reform if it means higher taxes (including corporate and mining taxes) or cuts in other areas

No opinion

National Disability Insurance Scheme to improve care and support for all people in Australia with a significant and permanent disability

58%

22%

20%

New dental health scheme to provide free dental care for low-income patients and children

53%

29%

18%

Gonski reforms to education to increase funding for each primary and secondary school student across the country

48%

30%

21%

Purchase of new advanced submarines for the Australian Defence Force

24%

50%

26%

The majority of respondents support implementing the NDIS (58%) and the new dental health scheme (53%) if it means higher taxes (including corporate and mining taxes) and cuts in other areas.

A large portion of respondents (48%) also agree with implementing the Gonski reforms if it means higher taxes and cuts in other areas, whereas 30% would prefer to see these reforms not implemented.

On the purchase of new submarines for the ADF, most respondents felt that this reform should not be implemented if it means higher taxes and cuts in other areas (50%), whilst 24% are in favour of implementing the reform.

Important election issues

Jul 30, 2012

Q.  Which are the three most important issues in deciding how you would vote at a Federal election?

 

First

Second

Third

Total

30 Jul 12

5 Dec 11

6 June 11

25 Jan 10

Management of the economy

38%

16%

10%

64%

62%

61%

63%

Ensuring a quality education for all children

5%

10%

11%

26%

22%

26%

23%

Ensuring the quality of Australia’s health system

10%

19%

18%

47%

47%

49%

48%

Protecting the environment

3%

4%

4%

11%

13%

15%

16%

A fair industrial relations system

4%

3%

5%

12%

11%

8%

*

Political leadership

11%

7%

7%

25%

18%

17%

23%

Addressing climate change

3%

3%

3%

9%

10%

15%

16%

Controlling interest rates

2%

2%

5%

9%

11%

13%

15%

Australian jobs and protection of local industries

13%

15%

13%

41%

36%

32%

33%

Ensuring a quality water supply

*

1%

2%

3%

4%

5%

12%

Housing affordability

3%

5%

5%

13%

13%

16%

14%

Ensuring a fair taxation system

4%

7%

7%

18%

16%

17%

14%

Security and the war on terrorism

1%

1%

3%

5%

4%

8%

9%

Treatment of asylum seekers

3%

4%

3%

10%

8%

5%

*

Managing population growth

2%

3%

3%

8%

8%

12%

*

*Not asked

64% of people surveyed rated management of the economy as one of their three most important issues, followed by 47% ensuring the quality of Australia’s health system and 41% Australian jobs and protection of local industries.

Since December, there has been an increase in the importance of political leadership (+7%), Australian jobs and protection of local industries (+5%) and ensuring a quality education for all children (+4%).

Party trust to handle important election issues

Jun 18, 2012

Q.  Which party would you trust most to handle the following issues?

 

Labor

Liberal

Greens

Don’t know

Difference

18 Jun 12

Difference

5 Dec 11

Management of the economy

26%

44%

3%

27%

-18

-18

Ensuring a quality education for all children

33%

35%

5%

26%

-2

-2

Ensuring the quality of Australia’s health system

30%

36%

7%

27%

-6

-3

Protecting the environment

17%

21%

38%

24%

+17

+14

A fair industrial relations system

36%

30%

6%

28%

+6

+4

Political leadership

21%

37%

7%

36%

-16

-17

Addressing climate change

18%

24%

31%

27%

+7

+6

Controlling interest rates

22%

40%

3%

35%

-18

-18

Protecting Australian jobs and protection of local industries

29%

35%

6%

31%

-6

-3

Ensuring a quality water supply

16%

28%

23%

33%

-12

-12

Housing affordability

22%

33%

5%

39%

-11

-10

Ensuring a fair taxation system

26%

36%

5%

32%

-10

-9

Security and the war on terrorism

18%

40%

4%

38%

-22

-19

Treatment of asylum seekers

16%

36%

13%

36%

-20

-19

Managing population growth

17%

36%

7%

40%

-19

-17

Note – Differences are calculated by subtracting Liberal % from Labor % – except for the two issues on which the Greens lead in which case it is Greens minus Liberal.

Labor does not have a substantial lead over the Liberal Party on any item measured. The Liberal Party has maintained strong leads on management of the economy, controlling interest rates, political leadership and security and the war on terrorism.

There is little difference between Labor and the Liberals for ensuring a quality education for all children, ensuring the quality of Australia’s health systerm and protecting Australian jobs and protection of local industries. Overall, there has been very little change in these results since December.

Matthew McGowan – National Tertiary Education Union

May 1, 2012

Matthew McGowan came to the NTEU National Assistant Secretary’s position in October 2010 after eight years as Victorian Division Secretary.

He has worked in the sector for 20 years and been a union activist throughout his working life.

Pam Cahir – Early Childhood Australia

May 1, 2012

Pam Cahir is the Chief Executive Officer of Early Childhood Australia, a national organisation which advocates on behalf of young children.

Her interests are in supporting parents and other professionals who are responsible for the growth and development of young children to do that work well.

Can we make our kids smarter?

May 1, 2012


Pam Cahir talks about the biggest improvements to early childhood education in 25 years.

More Australian babies and toddlers are in childcare than ever before. And they’re there when their brains are laying down the pathways vital for later learning, intelligence and social capability.

Pam Cahir, the CEO from Early Childhood Australia, tells 3Q how new national reforms are ensuring childcare centres provide a nurturing environment that will ultimately have a long-term beneficial effect on the society of the future.

Critics of the Government’s plan say the changes will cost up to $27 a day more in childcare. But Pam Cahir says they are exaggerating the price increases, which she estimates to be closer to $5 a day.

The ECA believes the small price increase is warranted to ensure the long-term goals of the reform agenda are met.

Are we dumbing down our universities?

May 1, 2012


Matt McGowan explains why opening up university places is admirable but will fail unless it is matched with better funding.

This year almost 90 per cent of school leavers who applied to go to university got a place. That’s because the government removed the caps on university enrolments to create more opportunities for those from lower socio-economic groups.

But Matt McGowan from the National Tertiary Education Union tells 3Q that academics are already suffering with the swelling numbers of foreign fee paying students. With this new influx – which brings in much less funding capital – the pressures on the system will be magnified.

He talks about the NTEU’s campaign Invest in Universities calling for a fix to the problem.

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