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Francis Sullivan (CSSA)

Catholic Social Services Australia has welcomed Albanese Government plans to establish an independent panel to annually review support payments such as JobSeeker and parenting payments ahead of each federal Budget.

The new panel is part of a deal with independent senator David Pocock to support the Government’s industrial relations bill and will establish an economic inclusion advisory committee to review welfare payments and provide advice to the Government as it formulates its annual May budgets.

CSSA chair Francis Sullivan said the review panel would benefit low-income earners and people on support payments.

“This is a historic approach to support payments that we have been calling for for some time and will be of huge benefit for millions of people around Australia,” Mr Sullivan said.

“It marks a clear approach to ensuring support payments kept pace with the cost of living and inflation pressures and will be a huge boost for some five million people living in entrenched poverty and disadvantage.

“For years, advocacy groups, including CSSA, have been calling for a process that regularly reviews support payments.

“For too long, Australia’s most disadvantaged have been going without food, medicines, struggling to pay rent and to meet basic needs as they try to survive on $48 a day.

“This announcement provides some hope that they will be better off in the years to come,” Mr Sullivan said.


New support payment review panel game changer for people living below poverty line  (CSSA)