500 signatures reached
To: Australia Local Government Association
Help Us Increase Newstart
We need you to help us pressure the Federal government to raise Newstart.
You can do this by publicly acknowledging that the low rate of Newstart is exacerbating poverty and homelessness and advocating in writing to the relevant federal government ministers and MPs that the Newstart Allowance be increased to the level of the Henderson Poverty Line.
As the representative body for councils across Australia, you have an important platform to ask for dignity for unemployed workers. You need to use it.
Why is this important?
At only $269 per week, Newstart is $177 per week below the poverty line. It is less than 41 percent of the minimum wage, less than 18 percent of the average wage, and has not been raised in real terms for 23 years.
Even the Business Council of Australia has advocated to the government that the low rate of Newstart presents a barrier to employment and risks entrenching poverty.
Increasing Newstart would benefit local economies, by increasing the spending power of those on low incomes, whose extra funds would circulate through local businesses.
Given that the average time spent on Newstart is more than four years, Newstart has become a one-way ticket to poverty for many unemployed people.
Its time to raise it.