FIT Sponsorship
NEWS  | 

Liberal MP Attacks Welfare Peak Body

Tuesday, 9th September 2014 at 4:58 pm
Lina Caneva, Editor
Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s Parliamentary Sector has launched a blistering attack on the welfare sector peak body ACOSS, saying it is “blind to the evidence of the dangers of dependency”.

Tuesday, 9th September 2014
at 4:58 pm
Lina Caneva, Editor



Liberal MP Attacks Welfare Peak Body
Tuesday, 9th September 2014 at 4:58 pm

Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s Parliamentary Secretary has launched a blistering attack on the welfare sector peak body ACOSS, saying it is “blind to the evidence of the dangers of dependency”.

Liberal politician Alan Tudge wrote an opinion piece for the Australian newspaper today calling on the Australian Council of Social Services to support the Government’s changes to the welfare system.

“It seems the only welfare change it seeks is an increase in the size of payments,” Tudge said.

“ACOSS may think it is being morally principled, but it fails to realise that while welfare is a safety net, it can also create dependency and misery.

“Indigenous communities have been most acutely hit by welfare dependency, but it can happen anywhere, sapping people of ­motivation and spirit.”

Tudge went on to say that ACOSS could not see the dangers of welfare dependency “because, to it, welfare is not a risk but an open-ended entitlement”.

“Welfare advocates who see welfare as simply one of the ways that people receive an income cannot comprehend the purpose of the government’s suggested waiting period for the dole or other reforms; waiting for the dole would form part of an incentives structure aimed at fostering social norms and values that reject reliance as a choice,” he said.

“Our objective is to instil in every young person that welfare is not an attractive option after school. The knowledge that it will not be possible to quit school, training or a job and get cash in the hand must be internalised.

“Consequently, we suggest the dole should not be immediately available for school-leavers. Rather, youth allowance will be available for those who want to improve their skills.”

But the Greens spokesperson on family and community services Senator Rachel Siewert jumped to the defence of ACOSS.

“The Government is taking the community sector to task, while at the same time pushing their unjustified cuts to income support and other social services onto the Australian public,” Siewert said.

“Clearly the Government is willing to attack organisations in the media, rather than listen to what they are saying. They are more interested in ideology than evidence from the real world. They have introduced radical and wide ranging policy changes without any meaningful consultation with the sector or without basing them on what actually works to help jobseekers and other vulnerable Australians.

“The sector knows far more than Mr Abbott and his colleagues about the pressure vulnerable people are under. When the sector speaks, the Government should be listening.”

ACOSS CEO Cassandra Goldie has responded to the criticism in the newspaper saying “rather than being resistant to welfare reform, ACOSS has long been a strong advocate for major reform of the social security system to streamline and simplify it and deliver greater consistency and fairness."

Lina Caneva  |  Editor |  @ProBonoNews

Lina Caneva has been a journalist for more than 35 years, and Editor of Pro Bono Australia News since it was founded in 2000.


HLB Mann Judd is a specialist Accounting and Advisory firm t...

HLB Mann Judd

NGO Recruitment is Australia’s not-for-profit sector recru...

NGO Recruitment

Fantastic digital management app for organisations deliverin...


Helping the helpers fund their mission…...

FrontStream Pty Ltd (FrontStream AsiaPacific)

More Suppliers

Get more stories like this



Remote Work-for-the-Dole Program Under Fire for Excessive Penalties

Luke Michael

Tuesday, 9th January 2018 at 8:42 am

Remote Work-for-the-Dole Program Under Review

Luke Michael

Friday, 15th December 2017 at 10:25 am

Petition Calls for Gary Johns to Resign as ACNC Head

Luke Michael

Monday, 11th December 2017 at 4:52 pm

Political Parties Argue Plans to Extend Cashless Debit Card

Lina Caneva

Wednesday, 6th December 2017 at 5:09 pm


$110M Package Tackles Anxiety and Depression Among Young Australians

Wendy Williams

Tuesday, 9th January 2018 at 8:46 am

Privatisation Poses New Challenges for NFPs Managing Their Workforce

Luke Michael

Tuesday, 9th January 2018 at 4:36 pm

Social Enterprise Announces $500,000 Funding for Social and Affordable Housing

Luke Michael

Monday, 15th January 2018 at 11:26 am

White Ribbon Australia CEO Announces Retirement

Wendy Williams

Wednesday, 10th January 2018 at 5:15 pm

Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

FIT Sponsorship
pba inverse logo
Subscribe Twitter Facebook

The social sector's most essential news coverage. Delivered free to your inbox every Tuesday and Thursday morning.

You have Successfully Subscribed!