Articles on Newstart

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Looming cuts to expenditure and probable tax increases mean there will inevitably be winners and losers. But just how should these be chosen? Image sourced from

ALP’s real budget balancing act is picking the winners and losers

The government is facing two options to tackle its budget deficit: significant cuts in government expenditures or increasing taxes to close the gap with spending. Prime Minister Julia Gillard has already…
The government policy which moves sole parents onto lower paid Newstart benefits once their children turn eight has caught the attention of the United Nations Human Rights Council. Flickr/Flickeringerbrad

How can the government justify a policy that penalises working sole parents?

Late last year, the United Nations’ Human Rights Council expressed its concern that moves to push sole parents onto a lower paid income support may breach our responsibilities under a number of human rights…
Fairness test: the Federal government has targeted the earnings of single parents while supporting wealthy superannuants. AAP

Current super concessions favour the wealthy - so why aren’t we supporting reform?

It says much about the degeneration of the Australian Labor Party that its priority and target for budget “savings” is poor single mums. In order to save an estimated $723 million over four years, in January…
Sole parents face competition from other jobseekers for flexible jobs that enable them to care for their children. AAP

What the government wants to ignore about sole parents and jobseeking

It is universally agreed Newstart is inadequate, especially for the long-term support of individuals or families. The government says their solution is for recipients to get a job, but that is not easy…
Jenny Macklin has found herself in hot water over comments about the dole. AAP/Alan Porritt

ALP must make a Newstart on its broken welfare policy

There seems little doubt that Families Minister Jenny Macklin’s office attempted to “fix up” her extraordinary faux pas last Tuesday – her claim that yes, she could live on the daily income of $35 received…
The ALP has passed a bill that will reduce the social security payments for single parents — most of whom are women. Ed Yourdon\Flickr

Prejudiced policymaking underlies Labor’s cuts to single parent payments

There’s no doubt that last week’s stoush between Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott over sexism and misogyny was extraordinary. But in spite of all the bluster, a comparison of each party’s policies might serve…
Single mothers such as Michelle Daly have high aspirations for their children. Reducing their payments won’t help achieve them. AAP/Lukas Coch

Taking the big stick to single parents is not the answer

New legislation was passed last week to move single parents off the parenting payment, and onto the Newstart Allowance once their youngest child turns eight. Advocates for this change suggest that the…
Workplace Relations Minister Bill Shorten has agreed to examine Newstart rates after ruling out a raise to the dole earlier this week. AAP

Down and out, and on the dole: why the Newstart Allowance needs a raise

Why do we have welfare policies that create unnecessary poverty? Despite a multitude of reports, submissions, public pleas and other advocacy on the problems of Newstart (NSA) recipients, the government…
Policymakers should ensure that the safety net provides adequate income for daily needs as well as ensuring that people are positioned to quickly reintegrate into satisfactory paid employment. freefotouk

No through road: path to prosperity eludes America’s jobless poor

In the late 1990s, American writer and activist Barbara Ehrenreich spent a year working in low end jobs in the United States documenting the pitifully low wages, the oppression, and barriers to upward…
The increased provisions for welfare spending are partially symbolic, but also lay the foundations for a more progressive tax and welfare system. AAP

Class warfare in the budget? That’s a bit rich

The Treasurer Wayne Swan has described the 2012 Budget yesterday as “a Labor budget to its bootstraps”, and commentators have variously seen it as “a big taxing, big spending budget, including a big increase…
For the majority of Newstart Allowance recipients, payments barely cover the cost of rent - let alone other living expenses. AAP

Paltry Newstart Allowance is fast becoming a poverty trap

Despite ongoing uncertainty about global economic conditions, prosperity in Australia remains both very high and relatively widespread. But there is one group in Australia who has not shared in our rising…

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