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Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert responds to Tony Abbott’s defence of the DSP crackdown

“Tony Abbott’s defence of the DSP crackdown and attempting to minimise the struggles of people with disability who are unable to work is ridiculous and should be condemned”, Australian Greens spokesperson on disabilities Senator Rachel Siewert said today.

“He has once again demonstrated how out of touch he is with community and particularly vulnerable Australians, and he clearly doesn't know what he is talking about.

“Mr Abbott should know that the reassessment of people with disability on DSP against the newer eligibility criteria has in many cases thrown people with disability below the poverty line and into precarious circumstances. This is causing huge anxiety to people with disability and Carers.

“To say this cohort amount to ‘welfare villages’ and are people with ‘a bad back and a bit of depression’ is disgraceful. People are on the DSP because they have a disability and cannot work and this new approach has been cruel and problematic.

“This was always about penny pinching from struggling Australians and I urge the former Prime Minister to talk to those that have had to go through this process and the highly stressful appeals processes”.

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