$35 a day is trapping people in a cycle of poverty -- please lift Newstart and the other low paying Allowances to a decent, liveable level.
"I lost my job after the company I worked for went under. I thought I lived in a country that would help me back to my feet -- but instead it feels like I'm being punished." - Lauren from Melbourne
When a person is without work and money they can feel like the world is against them. The government provides people with a "Newstart Allowance", which is meant to help them pay for essentials and assist in the search for paid work. However, the level of support is so low that it doesn’t even meet these goals. After rent, $35 a day can easily become $16 a day. How can you feed yourself and your family, pay the bills and pay for the transport required to search for paid work on that amount?
The $35 a day allowance hasn't been increased in nearly 20 years. People who depend on these payments are not able to keep up with even basic living costs.
We consistently see this story in research findings. People who receive Newstart Allowance are the most likely to become homeless. Often, they are forced to seek emergency relief from community organisations. Many have a disability or mental illness. Instead of providing these people a platform to find paid work, Allowances are so low that they just don’t hold up to basic costs of living.
A new Senate Inquiry is just beginning to look at this issue, giving us a small window to ensure they grant a much needed increase to the Newstart and other low paying Allowances.
Please sign the petition now and join the Australian Council of Social Service in calling for an urgent increase of $50 a week to unemployment allowances.
By signing, you’re adding your voice to the growing call for people to receive the basic support that they need to get back into paid work.
For more information go to: http://www.acoss.org.au