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Old economy wins while new economy loses

Public mental health and private mineral wealth are the big winners out of this year's budget, Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.

"The Greens are celebrating the $1.5 billion boost to mental health funding, although we are shocked to discover that almost $0.5 billion is outside the forward estimates. There is a bias in the overall budget to the influential mining barons who are unelected and send massive profits overseas. While the mining corporations gain, programs for Australians, including the environment have been cut by billions," Senator Brown said.

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Joint Press Conference - Australian Greens Leader, Senator Bob Brown, and Greens health spokesperson, Senator Rachel Siewert – in Canberra today

Senator Bob Brown and Senator Rachel Siewert urge state and federal leaders to boost mental health services and work towards a national, universal public dental care scheme.

Senator Brown also vows to take on Rio Tinto, whose profit bonanza will benefit its more than 70-percent foreign shareholders, and other heavyweights as companies prepare to fight efforts to develop an alternative to coal and the Greens’ push to put an effective price on carbon.

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Govt misses opportunity to boost mental health, but Greens decide to back Private Health Bills

Having previously opposed the Medicare Levy Surcharge, the Greens have now decided to support both it and the Private Health Insurance Rebate legislation.

The Greens will support the legislation which would see $1.9 billion directed to public hospitals, despite the Government rejecting a proposal that would have given a $145 million boost to early intervention mental health services.

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