Viewing articles in Portfolio:

Family, Ageing and Community Services

Filter Articles

Senate inquiry hears Jobactive is not fit for purpose, a form of “institutional abuse” and needs urgent reform

Evidence heard at the senate inquiry into the jobactive program today has revealed a punitive system that is not getting people into long term employment and is causing distress and humiliation.  

“I referred this issue to inquiry because I have heard of too many experiences of people not getting the help they need, living in poverty unable to find work, next to no support in a competitive job market and an extremely punitive compliance framework.  

Read more

Labor still hedging their bets on raising Newstart and addressing poverty

Leader of the Australian Greens Dr Richard Di Natale today said Labor was clearly feeling the heat on Newstart, with an internal document showing cracks starting to appear in their continued refusal to back any raise to the payment.

“It’s good that Labor is finally waking up to the reality that $278 a week is simply not enough to live on, but again, they’re not making any promises to fix it,” Dr Di Natale said.

Read more

Australian Greens launch tax overhaul to smash systemic inequality

Leader of the Australian Greens Dr Richard Di Natale today has launched the party’s plan to use our tax system to end poverty and inequality, stripping back tax breaks and ending subsidies to Big Business in favour of funding essential services and increasing Newstart for the first time since 1994.

Following a keynote speech at the Australian Council of Social Services National Conference, Dr Di Natale said Australia’s economic growth was not being shared by all.

Read more

Almost 48 million calls to Centrelink have gone unanswered last financial year

47, 950, 425 million calls to Centrelink have reached a busy signal in the last financial year with 5,313,954 being abandoned.

Youth and students are spending the longest average time waiting, currently waiting on hold for 32 and half minutes.

16 460,902 calls to the Families and Parenting line, 15,895,174 calls to the Employment Services line and 7,781,803 calls to the Youth and Students line reached a busy signal in the last financial year.

Read more

Fewer people applying for and being approved for the Disability Support Pension (DSP) Estimates reveals

“There has been a sharp decline in people applying for and being approved for the disability support pension Estimates has revealed.

“In 2012 the Labor Government  reduced the number of people able to access the support, introducing changes to the eligibility criteria and forcing people to prove they can’t find work for 18 months.

“In 2015 the Abbott Government announced they would be reviewing  DSP recipients under 35 and then started on those over 35.

Read more

Estimates reveals that one third of Centrelink reviews relate to DSP

Questions to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal at Estimate yesterday revealed that one third of Centrelink cases the tribunal is reviewing  are related to the Disability Support Pension.

"In 2017/2018 there was a total of 10 913 reviews regarding Centrelink lodged, 3610 of which were on the Disability Support Pension.

"Lodgements relating to decisions about disability support pension continued to be the most common type of application, comprising 33 per cent of all Centrelink lodgements.

Read more

Apology: Greens support survivors ongoing pursuit of justice

The Australian Greens have expressed their admiration for the courage of survivors of institutional child sexual abuse and their strong support for survivors’ ongoing pursuit of justice.

“Yesterday was a very important, although a difficult day for many people and it resurfaced many traumatic issues for survivors, Senator Rachel Siewert, Greens spokesperson on Families and Communities said.

“It has been a privilege to work with and listen to survivors during the National Apology Reference Group process.

Read more

Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission: Bill needs strengthening and lacks reference to the rights of older Australians  

The Australian Greens have provided additional comments to the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission Bill 2018 inquiry report  which has tabled this morning.

“While the Greens are broadly supportive of this bill we believe there are a series of amendments required to ensure that we are doing the best to ensure safety and quality of care for older Australians, Greens spokesperson on ageing Senator Rachel Siewert said.

Read more

Minister Scullion fails to comply with OPD and provide CDP evaluation before introducing new bill

Minister Scullion has failed to properly comply with the Greens Order for a Production of Documents to release the final evaluation report of the Commonwealth Development Program (CDP) by today.

“The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet confirmed in their response to questions on notice that the report has been completed – but the Minister has written in response to the OPD to advise that it has not yet been “finalised”.

“The Senate should not be asked to consider this CDP bill before we have seen the evaluation of the current program.

Read more

Senate ignores survivors and votes down key part of Greens motion to amend the Governor General Act

The senate has ignored the wishes of survivors of institutional child sexual abuse and voted down a key part of a Greens motion calling on the Government to make changes that would allow them to cease ongoing payments to former Governors-General, where they have acted unconscionably or illegally.

While the Senate supported Clauses a to c of my motion including the clause expressing concern about the current situation, the key Clause (d) calling for amendments to the Act were not supported by either of the major parties.

Read more