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Greens support naming of organisations not signing up for Redress and want cutting of tax concessions

“The Greens support the naming of the 6 organisations who have failed to sign up to the National Redress Scheme. The Greens also support the revoking of tax concessions and charity status for organisations who choose not to participate in the scheme and deny justice for survivors.” Senator Siewert, the Australian Greens spokesperson on Family and Community Services said today. 

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Morrison back to his old myths and tropes surrounding Jobseeker

"The PM'S claims that the Jobseeker rate is discouraging people from working is a regression to old myths and tropes used to demonise people who are accessing income support." Senator Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens spokesperson on Family and Community Services said today. 

"The Government is trying to restart their campaign against people who need to access income support." 

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Government must ensure Jobseeker remains above the poverty line

"I am disappointed that the Government has continued to deny reports of plans to permanently increase the rate of Jobseeker come September" Senator Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens spokesperson on Family and Community Services said today. 

"There are over 1.6 million people currently receiving Jobseeker. It cannot be Government policy for them to live below the poverty line on a payment of $40 a day. It needs to reassure people that this won't happen." 

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Government must urgently act on Change the Record Report and start by including a First Nations representative on the COVID Coordination Commission

The Change the Record Critical Condition Report released today has shown how existing inequalities and injustices faced by First Nations peoples have been exacerbated and further entrenched by the COVID crisis and highlights the urgent need for a recovery that includes First Nations peoples. 
 
“This report highlights exactly why we need more transparency around the National #COVIDー19 Coordination Commission," Senator Rachel Siewert said. 
 

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$60 billion should be spent on keeping  people above the poverty line

The revised Jobkeeper figures released today mean that the Government has no excuse to return the Jobseeker payment to $40 a day at the end of September. 

Further, the Government can top up the DSP and Carer Payments so that disabled people and carers can meet the additional costs they are facing because of the pandemic.

No one in a country as wealthy as Australia should be living in poverty and cutting income support payments to those who need it most is a choice, not an inevitability.
 

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COVID Senate Committee hears there may be changes to Community Development Program post Covid 

I was pleased to hear at the public hearing of the COVID Senate Select Committee today that there are active discussions about the future of the Community Development Program. 

CDP cannot continue to keep running as it was before its suspension as part of the response to COVID19. It is a punitive and discriminatory program that sees work for the dole participants, who are largely First Nations peoples having to do work hours and have participation requirements that are far higher than those in the Jobactive program.

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Disappointment that Senate didn’t show solidarity with disabled people and carers who are struggling with costs due to COVID-19 

“It’s deeply disappointing that the Senate didn’t demonstrate solidarity with disabled people and carers by supporting the Greens motion calling on the Government to provide the full $550 coronavirus supplement to Disability Support Pension and Carer Payment recipients,” Senator Rachel Siewert said.
 
“Disabled people and carers feel abandoned by this Government and today we had the opportunity to show them they have not been abandoned by the Senate. 
 
“The Government cannot deny that there are increased costs that come with living through a pandemic. 
 

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Reducing Jobseeker would be irresponsible

The Greens say the Government's plans to reduce the Jobseeker payment in September is reckless, unfair and fiscally irresponsible.

“To meet the OECD relative measure of poverty a fortnightly income of at least $1012 is needed, keeping Jobseeker at its current rate would ensure people were not living in poverty.

“How will people survive if they cannot even afford the basics like rent or groceries and how will our economy repair if people can’t spend?

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A decent and fair safety net means all payments above the poverty line 

The Australian Greens say that Treasurer Frydenberg’s statement that we must ensure “a safety net which is underpinned by a sense of decency and fairness” means that the Government must commit to maintaining the current rate of the Jobseeker payment and ensuring that no income support payment is below the poverty line. 
 
"It would not be decent or fair to take the Jobseeker payment back below the poverty line. 

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Greens say strong action needed against institutions who fail to sign up to Redress Scheme by June 30 deadline 

The Australian Greens said today that the recommendations of the Interim Report of the Joint Select Committee on the Implementation of the National Redress Scheme highlights the need for reforms of the Redress scheme.
 
“There is an urgent need for action in a number of key areas particularly in view of the looming deadline for institutions to join the scheme. It is unacceptable that some institutions are not joining the scheme", Australian Greens spokesperson on Family and Community Services Senator Rachel Siewert said. 
 

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