Report finds many Tasmanians are ‘dropping off the edge’

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Home > Media > News > Report finds many Tasmanians are ‘dropping off the edge’
Report finds many Tasmanians are ‘dropping off the edge’

Social inequality in Tasmania was the subject of the recent state briefing of the Dropping off the Edge report, the fourth in a series of reports jointly commissioned by Catholic Social Services Australia and Jesuit Social Services, held recently at the Catholic Diocesan Centre in New Town.

Associate Professor Margot Rawsthorne, co-author of the report, explained that disadvantage in Tasmania is concentrated within a few local Government areas.                                                                                        
“Right across the country we have found that a very small number of communities are carrying the burden of disadvantage, it is very disproportionate,” she said.

“In Tasmania, six local Government areas are accounting for six percent of disadvantage.”

Marcelle Mogg, CEO of Catholic Social Services Australia, spoke of the significance of the findings.

“People aren’t able to recognise their own potential or that of their children, they’re being held back,” she said.

“We think that isn’t only unfair, but it’s a wasted opportunity and a waste of potential.”

“It’s about arguing for everybody having the potential to realise their talents in life and really succeed and participate in the many goods Australia has to offer.” 
The report found that indicators of disadvantage in the State of Tasmania include: disengaged young adults, unemployment and low family income, contact with the criminal justice system and disability.

The importance of State economic growth is just as crucial as our duty to the socially disadvantaged, according to Professor Rawsthorne.

“We want to see political leaders make decisions for their communities and the communities they live in, based not only on their own interests but the interests of the people around them,” she said.

“It’s only when we look after the whole community that we actually all benefit, that’s the real irony of this.

“It’s not only that we have a moral duty to look after our neighbour, but everybody fares better when we do.”

Photo: L-R: Marcelle Mogg, Catholic Social Services Australia CEO; Margot Rawsthorne, Associate Professor and report co-author; Julie Prideaux, Jesuit Social Services Executive Director; Georgina McLagan, CatholicCare Tasmania Family Services Director.