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Tuesday, 10 September 1985
Page: 380

(Question No. 334)


Senator Macklin asked the Minister representing the Minister for Social Security, upon notice, on 29 May 1985:

(1) Is the Minister for Social Security aware that students of architecture who are unemployed are being refused unemployment benefits because the Commonwealth Employment Service classifies them as part-time or casual employees.

(2) Is the Minister aware that the students referred to in (1) above are also being refused allowances under the tertiary education assistance scheme because they are not full-time students.

(3) Will the Minister undertake to investigate the matters referred to above to ensure that some kind of financial assistance is made available to these students to allow them to continue their studies.


Senator Grimes —The Minister for Social Security has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

(1) No. However, the same conditions apply to students who apply for unemployment benefit as to any other person. An applicant for unemployment benefit must be:

unemployed;

capable of undertaking and willing to undertake paid work considered suitable for the person; and

taking reasonable steps to obtain such work.

A commitment to obtaining full-time employment throughout the whole of each period for which benefit is claimed is basic to these requirements.

It is the policy of my Department to encourage the lodgment of a claim by any person wishing to apply for unemployment benefit so that each case can be considered on its merits.

(2) It is understood that the tertiary education assistance scheme provides financial assistance only for full-time students.

(3) The question of income support for students is currently being examined in the context of the Government's youth income support review.