The Senate will this morning debate a Greens private members bill to reinstate the original rate of the Coronavirus Supplement to $550 a fortnight for people on Youth Allowance, JobSeeker and extend it to the Disability Support Pension and Carers.
This is the sixth bill to increase JobSeeker - formerly Newstart - that has been introduced by Senator Rachel Siewert to the Parliament.
"It is well recognised that the rate of JobSeeker prior to the Coronavirus Supplement is too low. People should not be forced to live on payments of $40 a day simply because they cannot find employment", Senator Rachel Siewert said.
If Labor and the Senate crossbench voted together with the Greens, this bill would be passed by the Senate and sent to the House of Representatives putting pressure on the Government to pass the bill or increase the payment themselves.
Parliament should be working together to ensure that people on income support payments are not forced to live below the poverty line.
It is cruel and dehumanising to keep people in limbo on what the rate of JobSeeker will be come December 31.
I will keep introducing private member’s bills and putting motions to Parliament until we get an increase to JobSeeker that is above the poverty line.
If this bill is passed it will reinstate the original rate of the Coronavirus Supplement at $550 a fortnight for people on the following income support payments:
• JobSeeker Allowance
• Partner Allowance
• Widow Allowance
• Youth Allowance
• ABSTUDY Living Allowance
• Parenting Payment
• Farm Household Allowance
• Special Benefit
The bill also extends eligibility for the Coronavirus Supplement to Disability Support Pension recipients and Age Pensioners receiving Commonwealth Rent Assistance and Carers.
Lucy Cowcher-Guthrie: 0418 401 180