Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Joint sector statement on Budget social security changes

The Tenants' Union of NSW has joined with the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) and more than 100 other community sector organisations in a statement on social security changes proposed in the Federal Budget.

We, community sector organisations and leaders from around the country, have come together to express our deep concern about changes to social security payments currently being considered by the Federal Parliament.

We support a robust safety net to protect people in the event that they are unable to support themselves due to unemployment, caring responsibilities, disability, incapacity or other unforeseen circumstances.

We recognise that most of us will rely on this safety net at some point in our lives, and reject the division between those who 'lift' and those who 'lean'. We all lift and lean at different points in our lives, sometimes simultaneously....

To this end, we ask our elected representatives to reject the following budget measures:
  • The removal of income support for six months of the year for young people looking for work (see factsheet here)
  • The transfer of 22-24 year olds from the Newstart Payment to the lower Youth Allowance (see factsheet here)
  • The indexation of pensions to CPI rather than wages including the Age Pension, Disability Support Pension, Carer Payment, Parenting Payment Single and Veterans Payments (see factsheet here)
  • Changes to family payments which will reduce support to low income families including sole parent families (seer factsheet here)
  • Increasing the Age Pension age from 67-70 years, in the absence of any increase to Newstart (see factsheet here).

Read the full joint statement at ACOSS.

Speaking for ourselves, as tenants advocates, we can only add our particular concern for what these changes would do to the ability of young people and people in receipt of social security payments to get and stay housed.

For our further thoughts on the Budget and fiscal policy, look under our Federal Budget and Modern Monetary Theory labels.

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