As a father of two, I’m worried about the world our young people are entering as they become adults. 

They’re expected to carry high levels of debt from tertiary education, before they even find a full-time job. It’s harder than ever for them to find a good job, with youth unemployment 50% higher than it was ten years ago, and underemployment higher than it’s been for 40 years.

Buying a house in Australia, let alone Sydney, is harder than ever. Rates of home ownership among people aged 25–34 have nearly halved since 1980. And even renting is out of reach for many – every suburb in Warringah is now classified as ‘unaffordable’ for renters with an average household income.

It’s no wonder the rate of mental illness is rising amongst our youth. Damning recent figures show that 1 in 4 Australians between 16 and 24 have experienced a mental disorder in the last twelve months. And not enough is being done by the Liberal coalition government to address these symptoms, or their major causes.

We can do better for the young people in Warringah:

  • We can reform negative gearing and capital gains tax to remove distortions from the housing market.
  • We can better fund our TAFE colleges and universities, and reduce the cost of tertiary education for students.
  • We can provide the investment our public schools need in educating and skilling our future generations.
  • We can provide better workplace protection for young workers to ensure they’re not being taken advantage of.
  • And we can provide young people with better access to qualified mental health professionals and services.

  1. Source: ABS Labour Force Statistics
  2. Analysis of the latest Census data by the Grattan Institute
  3. Northern beaches rental market hit hard by affordability crisis
  4. Youth Mental Health Report 2017 – Black Dog Institute