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Push to end living below the line

THE Hobart community received an important reminder in mid-October that there are services available out there for people who are struggling and living below the poverty line.

At the Anti-Poverty Week launch in Elizabeth Street Mall, Iza McInnes talked about her and her family’s experiences facing poverty.

“I grew up in Tasmania and started moving around Australia a lot when I was eight,” Iza said.

“Domestic violence was one of the main reasons and my mum just fell into a hole of depression along with the rest of my family.

“We’ve been slowly building our way back up and out of it.”

With her three older siblings having left home, it was up to Iza to look after her mother and young brother Joe until she moved out at the age of 14, handing the responsibility over to Joe.

Iza said Anti-Poverty Week and services that helped struggling people were extremely important.

“I have so many friends who are in very bad situations, but they don’t know how to get out because nothing is really there,” she said.

“I had to look on the internet to find Mara House and I’m so glad I did, but there just needs to be something else.

“Anti-Poverty Week might give hope to everybody out there that there is still hope for people to hear them and that something might change.”

Tasmanian Council of Social Service chief executive officer Kym Goodes said there were about 120,000 Tasmanians that were living well below the poverty line and couldn’t afford the most basic essentials people take for granted.

“We would describe poverty as anxiety, despair, hunger, fear, having no choices you can make yourself and having all those choices made for you,” she said.

“We want all Tasmanians to understand that their government needs to make the right choices to ensure Tasmanians can live that good life and can afford the most basic and essential things.”

Caption: From left, Iza McInnes, Salvation Army general manager of community services Stuart Foster and Tasmanian Council of Social Service chief executive officer Kym Goodes.

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About the Author: Hobart Observer

The Hobart Observer is your monthly community newspaper, reaching over 24,000 homes and businesses in and around the City of Hobart. It is the product of Nicolas Turner, Justine Brazil, Ben Hope, Simon Andrews, Tobias Hinds and guest contributors, with support from advertisers.

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