A re-elected Palaszczuk Labor Government will double the annual funding available for the successful Celebrating Multicultural Queensland grants program from $1 million to $2 million.
Multicultural Affairs Minister Grace Grace said the extra $3 million over three years would match strong and growing community demand, bringing a total $6 million investment in the program to the 2020-2021 financial year.
“The Celebrating Multicultural Queensland program funded 116 events and 15 projects across the state in 2016-17,” she said.
“This highly successful program helps to bring thousands of people together to celebrate multiculturalism across the length and breadth of Queensland.
“The Palaszczuk Government will continue to invest in this program as we work hard to undo the damage cause by Tim Nicholls’ savage cuts which inflicted so much unnecessary pain on multicultural communities.
“Tim Nicholls took an axe to Multicultural Affairs Queensland when he was Treasurer, cutting its budget from $8 million in 2011-12 under the previous Labor government to just $4.8 million in 2012-13.
“This brutal cut of around 40 per cent left many multicultural communities reeling, yet Tim Nicholls has never apologised for the damage he inflicted.
“Tim Nicholls and the LNP – not to mention their One Nation coalition partners – don’t understand how important multicultural events are in local communities.
“They see multiculturalism as a financial burden, and they’ll simply starve multicultural projects and organisations of funding if they’re re-elected.
“Cuts to community organisations, cuts to multicultural events, less support for translator and interpreter services – that’s Tim Nicholls and the LNP’s multicultural affairs legacy.
“Cuts to multicultural funding are sure to make a reappearance once more if an LNP-One Nation government becomes a reality.”
Ms Grace said over the last three years the Palaszczuk Labor Government had repaired the damage caused by the LNP’s savage cuts by fully restoring Multicultural Affairs Queensland’s funding to $8.2 million in 2017-18.
“This includes $2.2 million for the Community Action for a Multicultural Society (CAMS) program which the LNP planned to abolish altogether in 2015,” she said.
“Not only did we save CAMS from the LNP’s axe, we actually expanded the program, preserving the great benefits it delivers in communities throughout Queensland.
“The choice this election is between Annastacia Palaszczuk, who is delivering for the multicultural community, and a Tim Nicholls-Steve Dickson coalition that will inflict savage cuts to multicultural funding - just like they did last time.”