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20    Newstart and Youth Allowance

Senator Siewert, at the request of the Leader of the Australian Greens (Senator Di Natale) Leader of the Australian Greens and Senator Dodson, and pursuant to notice of motion not objected to as a formal motion, moved general business notice of motion no. 189—That the Senate—

               (a)       notes that it is Anti-Poverty Week from 13 to 19 October 2019, and that 17 October 2019 is the United Nations Day for the Eradication of Poverty;

               (b)       recognises that:

                                     (i)       the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) reports that the mortality rate for the poorest Australians is 1.5 times as high as for people in the highest socioeconomic group, and that the most economically disadvantaged Australians live on average, up to 5.7 years less than the wealthiest,

                                    (ii)       around 41% of people in the lowest annual household income group avoid or delay a visit to a dentist due to cost, which puts them at greater risk of more severe poor oral or general health in the future, as well as reducing their ability to find employment and housing, and

                                  (iii)       people living in rural or regional Australia, including First Nations peoples, are most likely to be impacted by poverty, have the worst health outcomes and face the greatest financial barriers to accessing health care;

                (c)       notes that:

                                     (i)       around 1 million people in Australia rely on the inadequate rate of Newstart and Youth Allowance,

                                    (ii)       this year, a Monash University study found that Newstart recipients are six times more likely to face poor health outcomes, and twice as likely to be hospitalised than wage earners, and

                                  (iii)       the Australian Medical Association has backed the call for a raise to Newstart, recognising that the payment is insufficient for someone with chronic or other illness; and

               (d)       calls on the Federal Government to do more to address the social and economic determinants of health, including immediately increasing Newstart and Youth Allowance.

Statement by leave : The Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries (Senator Duniam), by leave, made a statement relating to the motion.

Question put and passed.