Support payments to increase but many still living below the poverty line

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More than 4.7 million Australians will see an increase in support payments from 20 September following a 4 per cent increase in the consumer price index in the six months to June.

The Minister for Social Services, Amanda Rishworth, said the indexation increase was the largest in more than 30 years for allowances and 12 years for pensions.

Key increases include:

  • The Age Pension, Disability Support Pension and Carer Payment up by $38.90 a fortnight for singles and $58.80 for couples.
  • The maximum rate of the pension will increase to $1,026.50 a fortnight for singles and $773.80 for each member of a pensioner couple or $1,547.60 per couple, including the Pension Supplement and Energy Supplement.
  • The rate of Jobseeker for singles without children will increase by $25.70 a fortnight to a maximum of $677.20
  • Parenting payments for singles will increase by $35.20 per fortnight to $927.40.
  • ABSTUDY and Rent Assistance will also increase.

Executive Director of Catholic Social Services Australia, Ms Monique Earsman, said the increases in payments are welcome but fall well short of what is needed. People will continue to struggle when the fuel excise tax cut ends later this month.

“More needs to be done to ensure Australia’s most marginalised and disadvantaged are able to keep up with the soaring cost of living,” Ms Earsman said.

“While every little bit helps, the facts are these payments are still well below the poverty line.

“Currently, Jobseeker payment is $46 a day, youth allowance is $38 a day. These payments need to be boosted to $70 a day just to reach the poverty line.

“Millions of Australians continue to go backwards as they struggle to find the money to educate their kids, cover health and housing costs and met the daily expenses most of us take for granted.”

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Boost to welfare payments ‘fall well short’, CathNews

Media Contact: Michael Salmon | 0417 495 018

PO Box 6067, O’Connor ACT 2602. T 02 6285 1366 | E

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