Almost one million Australians will receive increases in their welfare payments next year, with the government announcing on Monday the largest boost in a payment to young people in more than two decades, not to mention extra cash for parents and students.
The basic rate for Youth Allowance for singles will go up by at least $19.10 a fortnight, with the maximum figure going to an extra $32.40 a fortnight. This means singles could be getting up to $569.80 a fortnight starting from January 1.
Those with dependent children can expect a boost of $41.40 to $729.60 a fortnight for singles, and an increase of $35.20 for partnered recipients.
Austudy payments, which are for mature students and apprentices, will increase by between $32.40 and $41.40 a fortnight depending on living arrangements and dependent children.
The increases are part of the routine indexation that occurs each January to keep up with changes to inflation, and are not the result of any government decision.
The Reserve Bank of Australia has forecast inflation to peak at eight per cent by the end of the year. Youth and student payments will lag slightly behind, being indexed by 6.1 per cent.
Social Services Minister Amanda Rishworth said the increase would help to cushion recipients against soaring cost of living.
“With the cost of living increasing, we need to ensure students and young people can cover basic costs while focusing on their studies and career aspirations,” Ms Rishworth said.
Those under 21, and without children, on the Disability Support Pension will receive payment increases of between $27.40 and $40.70 a fortnight, including the Youth Disability Supplement.
Rates of ABSTUDY and Assistance for Isolated Children will also increase, as will Mobility Allowance, Double Orphan Pension, Carer Allowance and Pharmaceutical Allowance.
Other rates and thresholds, like Jobseeker and the Aged Pension, are indexed at other times of the year.
Story Credit: news.com.au