The Australian Greens have introduced a bill in the Senate that would increase woefully low Newstart and Youth Allowance payments by $110 a fortnight.
“It is well known that income support payments have failed to increase overtime to reflect modern day cost-of-living. Now anyone accessing Newstart is receiving a grossly low payment that keeps them struggling below the poverty line.
“A single person on Newstart receives just $38 a day – it’s simply not enough to get by. The social services sector as well as the tax firm KPMG have called for the payment to be increased so that those seeking work don’t fall below the poverty line.
“It is not hard to imagine what people trying to live on these payments could do with the additional money. They will spend it and drive the economy at the same time. This change will bring relief to those on the very lowest rates of income support and assist them out of poverty.
“I hope that those that care about inequality will understand the role that adequate income support payments have in helping to address inequality. I hope they will get behind this bill which will offer relief to some of the nation’s poorest".