The Liberal Democrats believe in liberty. We want to keep the government out of your wallet and out of your personal life. While some government is necessary, Australia's government is bloated, expensive, inefficient, and restrictive. For more information about specific policies click the images below:
Everyone is different. We each value in different things, make different choices and live in different ways. The best way to allow everyone to live their own way is through mutual respect for each other’s liberty. So long as someone isn't harming anyone else, they ought to be free to live their life however they choose. Government has no place protecting people from themselves.
Vaping products are subject to an array of inconsistent and unnecessary restrictions. The Liberal Democrats recognize vaping as a substantially less harmful alternative to tobacco and a viable means of smoking cessation. Help us legalise vaping. Support the Liberal Democrats.
The Liberal Democrats support the full legalisation of cannabis for adults. It's time we ended the policy of prohibition on drugs and treated them on the basis of their harm. Cannabis is less harmful than alcohol and should be regulated less severely.
The Liberal Democrats believe you should be in control of your own life. Legalising assisted suicide would give those suffering from terminal and painful diseases more options. Taking this decision away from the sick and dying is immoral.
The New South Wales government is progressively locking residents out of their own state. Whether it's the nightlife killing inner-city lockout laws or new marine and national parks, New South Welshmen are allowed in fewer and fewer parts of their own country. The Liberal Democrats want to unwind these restrictions wherever possible.
Carrying pepper spray currently carries the same maximum penalty as sexual assault. It shouldn't be a crime to carry pepper spray for personal protection. The government should never force you to be defenceless in the face of danger. Self-defence is a right.
The government should not prevent anyone from reducing the harm of drug taking. Pill testing has the potential to save lives. However, we do not support using government funds for pill testing unless it can be shown to reduce overall costs to taxpayers.
Airsoft skirmishing is a sport enjoyed all around the world, using guns that fire small plastic pellets. These guns are essentially harmless but are illegal in NSW. Airsoft poses no risk to the general public and there's no reason it should be illegal.
Vehicle modifications may make vehicles dangerous to other road users, so they should be subject to some regulation. However, the current regime is unnecessarily strict, treats those who modify their cars as irresponsible and potentially dangerous, and leads to police harassment. The Liberal Democrats will seek to rework this broken system to allow enthusiasts more freedom in customising their vehicles.
Australia has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the world. The Liberal Democrats support responsible licensed firearm use and recognize the legitimacy of using firearms for sport, hunting, pest control, and self-defence. Further limiting the rights of law-abiding firearms owners is excessive and unnecessary overreach. Government should not treat citizen firearms owners like criminals.
Ideally, the government should provide services that only governments can provide, and only assist those who are unable to provide for themselves. Doing more than this results in excessive rates of taxation. The Liberal Democrats support spending reductions and tax cuts that limit government to its proper scope.
Stamp duty applies to insurance, housing, and vehicles. The New South Wales government raises more than $11b a year from stamp duty, meaning insurance, housing, and vehicles are $11b more expensive than they need to be. We believe that money is better off in the pockets of NSW residents than in government coffers.
The NSW government charges taxes on general, health and life insurance. These taxes make it more difficult for people to protect themselves against risks. Private insurance reduces reliance on taxpayer-funded healthcare and disaster relief, so discouraging private insurance by taxing it is self-defeating.
Gambling taxes account for $2.5b of NSW government revenue. We each enjoy different types of entertainment and it's not the government's place to be picking which entertainment is 'good' and which is 'bad'.
The NSW government charges more than $3b in vehicle-related fees and taxes every year. It also raises more than $2b in parking fines and $1.8b in speeding fines. Reducing these costs is essential to keeping costs of living low. Many families can have their finances seriously stressed simply by paying their registration a few days late.
The Liberal Democrats are not anarchists; we believe the government should provide a number of services and functions. For example, we believe in a foundational education for all, a welfare and healthcare safety net for the genuinely poor, a defensive military force, and a fair and transparent justice system.
The Liberal Democrats believe schools work best when parents and children, not bureaucrats, are free to choose which schools they prefer. Competition, choice, and direct accountability to parents will push schools to provide quality education for young Australians. Tying education funding to students, rather than to institutions, will improve quality and reduce costs.
The Liberal Democrats believe health services can be improved by putting control of funding into the hands of patients. Giving patients control over their health spending decisions will allow for a more competitive health industry which improves quality and reduces costs.
The Liberal Democrats support a welfare safety net for the poor and unfortunate, to protect people against absolute poverty. However, we oppose corporate and middle-class welfare. Spending taxpayers’ money on those who can afford to look after themselves is illegitimate.
Government intervention in the energy market is extensive, yet electricity prices soar and supply is becoming less reliable. The Liberal Democrats believe the energy market should be highly competitive and operated by the private sector in an environment of limited regulation which does not seek to pick winners.
- Sensible speed limits.
Speed limits should reflect the views of road users, not bureaucrats. Setting limits at the 85th percentile would ensure most road users believe the limit is fair and that enforcement is not about revenue raising. In most cases, application of the 85th percentile would result in higher limits on highways and major roads. It’s not likely to change limits in other cases, such as the majority of school zones.
- Motorcycles in public policy.
Motorcycles are often forgotten when it comes to infrastructure, road safety and traffic congestion. And yet they use less fuel, move through traffic more easily, cause less road damage and require smaller spaces to park. Governments should encourage motorcycles by charging them less than cars, for example on toll roads and for parking, and by making it easier to get around. The risk to motorcyclists should also be taken into account when erecting roadside barriers.
Encouraging motorcyclists benefits all motorists.
- Smoking and vaping restrictions.
Smoking restrictions should not override property rights. Business owners should have the same right as home-owners to choose whether to allow smoking in their establishment.
The Liberal Democrats support restrictions that prevent second-hand smoke adversely affecting others. However, many anti-smoking policies go well beyond such concerns and are based on simple disapproval. Smoking should not be restricted in areas where non-smokers are unaffected.
Vaporisers and e-cigarettes pose a much smaller risk. They are less odorous, disperse more quickly, and are not toxic. These technologies should be treated on their merits and not lumped in with tobacco.