ACOSS welcomes the Senate’s passage of legislation to create a permanent Economic Inclusion Advisory Committee, but says the Federal Government must include people on low incomes in policy making and establish a national definition of poverty.
ACOSS Acting CEO Edwina MacDonald says: “ACOSS welcomes the Albanese Government establishing a permanent, independent, legislated committee to advise it and future governments on adequacy of incomes for people on the lowest incomes.
“ACOSS also welcomes the Senate’s amendments that bolster the committee’s independence and require publication of the report two weeks ahead of the budget. We thank members of the crossbench and Greens who proposed and supported amendments to improve the Bill, including Kylea Tink, Zali Steggall, Andrew Wilkie, David Pocock, Janet Rice, and Tammy Tyrrell.”
ACOSS continues to urge the government to establish a national definition of poverty, in line with its obligations under the UN Sustainable Development Goals requiring signatories to halve poverty by 2030. The government must also include people directly affected in decision making.
“Putting poverty reduction at the centre of the committee’s work, and ensuring people can have input into policies that affect them, is essential if the government is serious about curbing poverty,” Ms MacDonald said.
“It is also crucial that the government act on its interim advisory committee’s priority recommendation to substantially increase income support payments including Jobseeker and Youth Allowance. ACOSS continues to call for payments to be lifted to at least $78 a day so people can afford the basics of life.”
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