Evidence provided at Estimates today has revealed that the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) has seen a significant increase in appeals relating to Centrelink including a:
• 77% increase in appeals relating to the Disabilty Support Pension (DSP)
• 41% increase in appeals relating to Newstart
• 34% increase in appeals relating to Youth Allowance
There was also a 75% increase in appeals relating to the NDIS
“This is deeply concerning, successive Governments have attempted to make it harder and harder for people to access the social safety net and this is particularly clear when it comes to the DSP", Senator Rachel Siewert said.
"Given the on-line compliance program, the punitive approach to Jobseekers and the demonisation of people on DSP, I’m not surprised there has been an increase in appeals.
“The overhaul of the DSP eligibility criteria and new assessment process has meant that there is greater difficulty in accessing this payment.
“The former Labor Government and then Abbott Government made changes to DSP designed to make it harder to access. Fortunately the current Government abandoned their campaign to reassess people receiving DSP as there were extremely few people moved off the payment.
“It is deeply concerning that disabled people and those without work have to fight tooth and nail, simply to be able to access a payment.
“Unfortunately the AAT has been unable to provide data on how many of the appeals relate to robodebt."
Lucy Cowcher-Guthrie: 0418 401 180