The Whitlam Government

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  • Topic: Gough Whitlam, Governor-General of Australia, 1975 Australian constitutional crisis
  • Pages : 7 (2370 words )
  • Download(s) : 81
  • Published : September 6, 2005
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The Whitlam Government (1972 – 1975) introduced many ideas that impacted on all the people of Australia. There may have been impediments that prevented the Whitlam Government from introducing new ideas, such as the Senate. Nevertheless in three years the Whitlam Government managed to win the hearts of many Australians. In their three year reign the Whitlam Government managed to create Medibank, establish firm relations with People's Republic of China, establish the Department of Aboriginal Affairs (Giving all Aboriginals a ‘voice'), obtained responsibility for tertiary education over from the states and eradicated tertiary fees, and establishing Supporting Mother's Benefit's. These were only a few of their achievements.

Gough Whitlam had previously seen and heard of the Medical health scheme systems based at U.K. which he favoured. The constitution was the barrier to introducing a health scheme in Australia, and the civil conscription clause. Medibank and other health schemes were designed to avoid civil conscription and provide healthcare service based on Government finance. Whitlam's aim in creating this system was to break the connection between healthcare and money. Whitlam wanted to break free from the hindrance of money; he wanted healthcare system based on health needs of people rather than the importance of money requirements. In 1972, the introduction of universal health insurance system known as Medibank (now Medicare) was born. It provided significant benefits to the population of Australia who had previously not been able to afford sufficient medical care; it declined private medicine and commenced to pay 85% of medical and hospital fees. Medibank provided inexpensive treatment by hospitals and doctors to all permanent citizens of Australia. Medicare is publicly funded tax surcharge that comes under the title of Medicare levy which add to the scheme. People with low income are excluded which follows a good example. People earning a high income pay a higher tax therefore compensating the loss of low paid workers.

Medibank made a vast impact on all the Australian society, as now many people could afford sufficient medical care chiefly people who were still tormented from poverty. The disadvantages might to some people be that the higher they earn the more they have to pay in tax for the Medicare levy.

The Whitlam Government had established a Department of Aboriginal Affairs and established the National Aboriginal Consultative Committee to promote interest of Aboriginal people in Australia and reduce the discrimination experienced by some. The leaders of the Aboriginal community proposed the issue to the government to develop a "black parliament" which would be responsible for dealing with issues affecting Aboriginals or part Aboriginals. The idea was developed and the Whitlam Government established the organization. The advantage of this was to have an organization dealing with the rights of the Aboriginals. The system is based on the decisions of the Aboriginal council members which run along 27 divisions, running along Australia to hear the issues of Aboriginals and then act upon it. This would put more concern to the issue as you would be talking about only one ethnic group, making it a bigger issue. The basic impact it had on Aboriginals was that it gave them a voice in parliament, and they could act on their basis of belief.

Australia's entrustment to the UN, was told to stop its support for South Africa and obtain a position in support of Third World policies in the UN, Whitlam had made contact with the Government of the Chinese Republic, ending contravene and warfare between China and Australia. Whitlam was able to begin a personal understanding with the Chinese Prime Minister Chou En Lai during his first year of office. For Australia this was a first that an Australian Prime Minister was able to develop a close bond between the leaders of China. Diplomatic trade relation had been created with...
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