Voices from Lockdown: New Report reveals the gruelling reality for people with least locked out from Federal Government disaster payments
People in lockdown struggling to get by below the poverty line have shared the gruelling experience in a report by the Australian Council of Social Service, released today.
People in lockdown on the lowest incomes, those on social security payments below the poverty line, are being excluded from the Federal Government’s COVID Disaster Payments, although they have lost part-time paid work or are prevented from getting work. Read more.
With lockdowns now in South Australia, Victoria and New South Wales, over one million people, including hundreds of thousands of children, are excluded from the Federal Government’s COVID Disaster Payments because they are on a social security payment, even though many have lost part-time paid work. Read more.
The Community Sector is extremely concerned for the welfare of about 800,000 lowest income people at risk of financial hardship in lockdown areas in Greater Sydney and Victoria especially those registered with Centrelink for social security payments who can’t access the Disaster payment and those with no income support at all including asylum seekers. “The NSW Government’s immediate action to shut-down non-critical workplaces in the local government areas of Fairfield, Canterbury-Bankstown and Liverpool, although understandable, will cause severe financial hardship on workers and families already vulnerable to the pandemic’s negative economic impacts,” said Settlement Services International (SSI) CEO Violet Roumeliotis. More
National Cabinet has failed to address the gaping hole in the Disaster Payment system that is leaving hundreds of thousands of people on the lowest incomes in lockdown on totally inadequate payments. “People rely on social security to supplement their part-time or casual work and that paid work has disappeared overnight. It is heartless that they are barred from accessing Disaster Payments when their colleagues can,” said CEO Dr Cassandra Goldie. Read more
ACOSS is disappointed to see that a Government-led Committee Report has not backed a climate change bill to reduce emissions and improve resilience to impacts, despite support for the bill across business, social, finance, health and environment sectors. CEO Dr Cassandra Goldie said “The climate crisis is causing immediate and accelerated damage to people’s homes, livelihoods, health, quality of life, employment, and cost of living, and is increasing risks and burdens for future generations.
The lockdown support package announced today by the Federal and NSW governments excludes people on the lowest incomes: people receiving JobSeeker, Youth Allowance and other payments even though so many are locked out of trying to find paid work in lockdown. JobSeeker is just $315pw and Youth Allowance is just $256pw. Read more.