Australians can and would give more to charities if encouraged to do so through a public campaign, says Labor Fenner MP Andrew Leigh, with his party working to double philanthropic giving by 2030 if elected to government. People who donate money to charity are happier and healthier according to studies, the Parliament's top advocate for evidence in policy noted while revealing Labor's plans for Australia's third sector. The country could empower charities without cutting public services so not-for-profits were needed to fill the void, Dr Leigh said in his speech to Philanthropy Australia on Thursday. "It's really important that this is about getting charities to step forward, not getting government to step back," he said. "Doubling charitable giving by 2030 is an ambitious task, but it's achievable. If we hit this goal, we'll have the same level of charitable donations to national income as New Zealand." A public campaign could change the public's view of philanthropy from an elite activity to a mass participation activity, he said. "Just as the Slip-Slop-Slap campaign changed attitudes to skin cancer, and the Grim Reaper changed attitudes to HIV/AIDS, a national giving campaign can change attitudes to philanthropy." The benefits are not all altruistic either, Dr Leigh noted of the impact changes that studies have linked to charitable giving. "The evidence shows that people who donate money to charity are happier and healthier. One experiment gave people a small amount of money. One group were to spend it on themselves, the other group were to give it to charity. Three weeks afterwards, those who had given the money to charity had lower blood pressure. The difference was so large that it was equivalent to doing regular exercise or taking hypertension medication." Dr Leigh and the charities sector have been vocal about the delays in implementing a broadly-accepted proposal to streamline the administration costs of charities by harmonising state and territories fundraising laws. An Albanese government could fix fundraising by working collaboratively with the states and territories, he said, while Prime Minister Scott Morrison had picked fights with premiers Mark McGowan, Daniel Andrews and Annastacia Palaszczuk. Jack Heath, the chief executive of Philanthropy Australia said Labor's commitment could be transformative. "Ultimately, it means more support for people in greatest need, and more funding to address the greatest challenges our country faces," he said. Labor has also proposed to remove a gag on some forms of advocacy and political activity by charities that was introduced in regulatory changes by the government last year to enable the charities commissioner to investigate and shut down registered charities for their activities. It comes after the Morrison government's budget last week announced tax law changes to make it easier for more Community Foundations Australia-linked entities to access tax-deductable donations and enable the foundations to receive funding from private philanthropy.