New Research from The Australia Institute has revealed that a majority of Australians would like to see Newstart recipients receive a bonus payment to help meet the increased costs of the holiday period.
- Two in three Australians (63%) support a holiday supplement for Newstart recipients. Only 25% oppose a supplement
- A majority of Australians in each income group support a holiday supplement, except for those in households earning more than $200,000 per year
- Support for a holiday supplement is highest among Labor (76%) and Greens (75%) voters, but it exceeds 50% among all voting intentions
- When asked how much the bonus should be, the most popular response (30%) was that the holiday supplement should be $500 or more
“No one likes a scrooge at Christmas and Australians clearly think it’s time for the Government to show a little generosity to those who are on Newstart,” says Ebony Bennett, Deputy Director of The Australia Institute.
“Many Australians struggle to make ends meet towards the end of the year, with the holidays putting increased pressure on the family budget, but for those on Newstart it is especially hard.
“While the general rate of Newstart is too low and should be lifted across the board, Australians also strongly support the idea of a modest payment to help families through the holiday season.
“It is often said that Christmas is a time for giving and this research shows that Australians are, at heart, a generous people who want to give those on Newstart a boost.
“Just because someone is doing it tough doesn’t mean they should struggle to get by while the rest of the country is enjoying the holiday season.
“Far too often it is left up to charitable organisations and community groups to look after those Australians who are less fortunate. A proper social safety net, with an increased Newstart payment, would give every Australian dignity and the best chance of getting back on their feet.”
Tanya Martin Office Manager
Jake Wishart Senior Media Adviser