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42,000 families denied payments over Christmas



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M E D IA STATEM ENT-• : - : ' . ' ' ‘ \ v · / ‘ . . 1 ? ' e » * · * ■ e * m ' ' ' . ' · ■ ■ ■ , ■ . . ...................................... . . < . ..... 3

Philip Ruddock MP Federal Member for Berowra Shadow Minister for Social Security Electorate

Tel: (02) 482 7111 Fax: (02) 482 7018

Parliament House Tel: (06) 277 4206 Fax: (06) 277 4178

42,000 FAMILIES DENIED PAYMENTS OVER CHRISTMAS

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Yesterday the Opposition revealed that families were denied their family payment and additional family payment over the Christmas and New Year period because the Department of Social Security claimed it was too busy to process customer's forms. .

Today the Department of Social Security confirmed that 42,000 families have been affected.

Investigations by the Opposition have revealed that the problem is nationwide.

There is no excuse for the Government creating unnecessary financial hardship for low income families already suffering the effects of rising interest rates, increasing poverty, and continuing high unemployment.

This whole debacle raises serious questions in relation to the administration and decision making processes of the Department of Social Security.

Who will take responsibility for making the decision to suspend family payments to 42,000 families?

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Was the Minister aware of the situation? and if he was, did he either make or endorse the decision not to pay family payments over the Christmas period?

Regardless of who is to blame, the fact remains that 42,000 families have had their incomes reduced because the Department of Social Security has been 'too busy' to process their forms.

13 January 1995

Contact: Philip Ruddock MP, 02 482 7111 or pager 02 925 3911 #25589.

CCMMONWEALTH PARLIAMENTARY H S R A E *