Report Reveals Welfare Payment System
9 October 2014 at 11:40 am
A “no disadvantage” grace period for welfare recipients under a new streamlined welfare payment system is expected to be among the recommendations of the McClure review, a national newspaper report has revealed.
The Australian Newspaper says it understands the McClure review panel is of the strong view that welfare recipients, such as disability support pensioners, should keep the same amount of money they receive from the Government but be reclassified and given new job search obligations.
In June the Federal Government released its review into welfare payments by former Mission Australia CEO Patrick McClure called A New System for Better Employment and Social Outcomes .
Minister for Social Services Kevin Andrews said at the time the interim review of Australia’s welfare system had put forward a simplified payments structure with four basic payment types, among other potential reforms.
“Australia’s current welfare system is incredibly unwieldy, with around 20 payments and 55 supplements which is complex to administer and difficult for individuals to access and understand,” Andrews said.
However the Labor Opposition says the media report confirms that the McClure Welfare Review will leave people on income support worse off.
“Giving people a “grace period” means nothing if they are going to be left worse off in the long run,” the Shadow Minister for Disability Reform, Jenny Macklin said.
“The reality is that vulnerable Australians will be hit hard by the recommendations of this review.
“Whilst Labor is not against simplification in principle, Labor is concerned that simplification is this Government’s code word for cuts.”
Tony Abbott needs to explain to low-income Australians – already reeling from the budget – exactly how they will be affected by the McClure Review and by how much.