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Thursday, 19 February 1987
Page: 373

To the Honourable Speaker and Members of the House of Representatives in Parliament assembled.

We, the undersigned citizens of Western Australia call on the Commonwealth Government to reverse recent decisions which deny Secondary Allowances to Year 11 students under the age of 16 years and make such allowances directly payable to students on attaining the age of 16.

This request is made on the basis that:

(i) Education Benefits as part of income support benefits generally are a Commonwealth responsibility under the constitution.

(ii) It is the right of parents with children in Year 11 in Western Australia to receive the same benefits as parents with children at the equivalent stage of their education in other parts of Australia irrespective of their age.

(iii) This decision by the Commonwealth Government will impact most unfairly on the capacity of low income families in Western Australia to keep their children at school in Years 11 and 12.

(iv) Direct payment of the allowance to 16 year olds will make it easier for young people to leave home and bring more pressure on State Authorities to find alternative accommodation for them at the community and taxpayers' expense.

Your petitioners therefore humbly pray that you will give this matter earnest consideration, and your petitioners, as in duty bound, will ever pray.

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