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Wednesday, 7 November 1973
Page: 1636

Senator Townley asked the Minister representing the Minister for Social Security, upon notice:

Will the Minister consider lifting the invalid pension to a higher level, so that young persons who are unlucky enough to be invalided will be better assisted in establishing a home and family.

Senator Douglas McClelland (NEW SOUTH WALES) - The Minister for Social Security has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

As announced in the Prime Minister's Policy Speech, the Government intends to increase the basic pension rate every Spring and every Autumn until it reaches 2 5 per cent of average weekly male earnings. On this point, I also refer to my second reading of the Social Services Bill No. 4 1973. I confirmed, in that Speech, the Australian Government's determination to achieve its goal of a standard rate pension of 25 per cent of average weekly male earnings and indicated that, if it is necessary, the pension increase for the Autumn Session will be greater than $1.50 per week.

That same Bill provided for additional payments for children of pensioners to be increased by 50c per week to $S per week for each child.

An invalid pensioner and his wife therefore received an increase of $6 a fortnight in their joint pensions plus $1 a fortnight in additional pension for each child.

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