The Federal government collects the vast bulk of taxes in Australia (around 81% of all tax collected). This provides services like national defence, health and education, and provides income support to thousands of Australians who would otherwise lack the income to live a reasonable life in an advanced society. The federal government also provides money to state governments to provide services – either directly through funding of programs in areas like hospitals, schools, transport and housing, or indirectly through the redirection of GST taxes to the states and territories.
The Australian Council of Social Services (ACOSS) is the peak body for the welfare sector at the national level and has a long history of advocacy in national tax issues. SACOSS provides input to ACOSS’ national advocacy and supports ACOSS’ tax work with South Australian based advocacy and campaigning. As with SACOSS state-based campaign, ACOSS seeks a fair and sustainable tax base. It has led the national debate on closing loopholes and concessions in superannuation and capital taxation that predominantly benefit those who can most afford to pay tax.