SBS cuts will affect Australia’s ethnic communities

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In last week’s Senate Estimates hearings, the SBS Managing Director Michael Ebeid could not guarantee that Abbott Government cuts to the SBS budget would not affect SBS language services.

I would find it very difficult to imagine being able to absorb any material cuts without a change in services.”

–   SBS Managing Director, Michael Ebeid – Senate Estimates, 25 February 2014

SBS provides vital services to migrant communities and any cuts to the SBS budget would hurt the community and be another broken promise by Tony Abbott.

“SBS ethnic radio is the lifeblood of many migrant communities providing ethnic specific news and important language services that are crucial for the local diaspora. Any cuts to the SBS budget will hurt these communities,” Michelle  Rowland , MP Shadow  Minister for Citizenship and Multiculturalism.

Before the election Tony Abbott promised hand on heart there would be no cuts to SBS.

He said on SBS News the night before the election:

“No cuts to education, no cuts to health, no change to pensions, no change to the GST and no cuts to the ABC or SBS.”

Since then the Government has established a Commission of Audit, which is examining the SBS budget and an Efficiency Review into the ABC and SBS.

“If the SBS budget is cut in May, the Prime Minister will have broken another promise to the Australian people. Now we also know that these cuts will hurt our community,” said Jason Clare , MP Shadow Minister for  communities.

The principal function of SBS is to provide multilingual and multicultural radio, television and digital media services that inform, educate and entertain all Australians and reflect Australia’s multicultural society.

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