Social security legislation amendment (Youth allowance) Bill 1997



Senator Sue Knowles, Chairman

LP, Western Australia

Senator Meg Lees, Deputy Chair

AD, South Australia

Senator Kay Denman

ALP, Tasmania

Senator Alan Eggleston

LP, Western Australia

Senator Michael Forshaw

ALP, New South Wales

Senator Karen Synon

LP, Victoria

Substitute Member

Senator Natasha Stott Despoja

for Senator Lees for the Committee’s inquiry

AD, South Australia

Senator Belinda Neal for Senator Denman for 30 October 1997 for the Committee’s inquiry

ALP, New South Wales

Participating Members

Senator Eric Abetz

LP, Tasmania

Senator Bob Brown

Greens, Tasmania

Senator the Hon Bob Collins

ALP, Northern Territory

Senator Mal Colston

Ind, Queensland

Senator Barney Cooney

ALP, Victoria

Senator the Hon Rosemary Crowley

ALP, South Australia

Senator Chris Evans

ALP, Western Australia

Senator the Hon John Faulkner

ALP, New South Wales

Senator Brenda Gibbs

ALP, Queensland

Senator Brian Harradine

Ind, Tasmania

Senator Sue Mackay

ALP, Tasmania

Senator Dee Margetts

GWA, Western Australia

Senator Shayne Murphy

ALP, Tasmania

Senator Kay Patterson

LP, Victoria

Senator the Hon Margaret Reynolds

ALP, Queensland

Senator Sue West

ALP, New South Wales

Senator John Woodley

AD, Queensland


Report - Social security legislation amendment (Youth allowance) Bill 1997


1.1 The Social Security Legislation Amendment (Youth Allowance) Bill was introduced into the House of Representatives on 2 October 1997. On 23 October 1997 the Senate, on the recommendation of the Selection of Bills Committee (Report No. 16 of 1997), referred the provisions of the Bill to the Committee for report by 10 November 1997.

1.2 The Committee considered the Bill at a public hearing on 30 October 1997. Details of the public hearing are referred to in Appendix 2 The Committee received 25 submissions relating to the Bill and these are listed at Appendix 1.


2.1 The principal objective of the Social Security Legislation Amendment (Youth Allowance) Bill 1997 is to introduce the new social security payment, Youth Allowance (YA). Payment of the allowance will commence on 1 July 1998 and will integrate income support payments for young people ‘regardless of whether they are in education, training, unemployed or sick’.[1]

2.2 The rationale for the introduction of youth allowance is stated as:

  • providing a comprehensive coverage of income support, thereby reducing the number of different rates of payment and addressing public concerns about the current fragmentation of income support arrangements between Commonwealth Departments;
  • removing undesirable incentives for young people to leave education or to choose unemployment over education and training;
  • reinforcing the Government’s philosophy that families should support young people until they are financially independent;
  • introducing flexibility to cater for the increasing number of young people who do not follow the traditional route from full-time study to full-time employment; and
  • providing increased assistance to those young students who need to live away from home, especially those from rural areas.[2]

2.3 Schedule 1 of the Bill amends the Social Security Act 1991 to introduce the Youth Allowance. YA will replace Youth Training Allowance, Newstart Allowance and Sickness Allowance for 16 to 20 year olds and most 15 year olds; and, AUSTUDY for students aged between 16 and 24 years, those aged 25 years if the course of study was commenced before turning 25 years and 15 year olds currently covered by AUSTUDY.

2.4 The provisions of the Bill establishing the rules to apply to the YA incorporate many of the provisions which apply to Youth Training, Newstart and Sickness Allowance and AUSTUDY. YA recipients will be subject to an activity test and penalties if the activity test is breached. Entitlement for the new allowance will be on a daily basis and paid fortnightly. Rent Assistance (RA) will be extended to students who are independent and who live away from home and students who live away from home for study reasons.

2.5 Schedule 2 of the Bill provides for the introduction of the new Youth Allowance Rate Calculator to determine the rate of YA payable to a person. The YA Rate Calculator is largely based on the structure and contents of the Youth Training Allowance Rate Calculator and the Sickness Allowance Rate Calculator.

2.6 In relation to the YA Rate Calculator, the Bill sets up the various interpretational rules used by the YA Rate Calculator including when a person is regarded as independent. The Bill provides for a person to be deemed to be independent if they: are homeless; have supported themselves for at least 18 months out of the previous two years; satisfy the special safety net criteria aimed at a person who is specially disadvantaged in terms of education or employment; are, or have been married; have had a dependent child; or are an orphan or a refugee.

2.7 The Bill provides for a parental income test. This will measure the capacity of parents to support their dependent children financially by looking at parents’ income, assets and actual means. The parental income test will generally apply to recipients who are not independent. The details of the test will be provided by regulation.

2.8 The Bill also provides for a personal and partner assets test for partnered independent people and a personal assets test alone for single independent people. This test will be based on the social security allowance income test.


Structural disincentives to continue in education

3.1 The Department of Social Security (DSS) noted that current income support arrangements provide a strong incentive for young people to claim unemployment payments rather than continue in full-time education or training. This is because unemployed people aged 18-20 who choose to live away from home can access a higher rate of payment.[3]

3.2 Several organisations agreed that measures in the Bill will provide incentives for young people to participate in education, especially the increased rate of payment for students if they must live away from home and the extension of RA to students living away from home for study reasons.[4] It was also noted that increased numbers of students will be eligible for the independent allowance rate as a result of the introduction of a work activity test which is fairer than that under AUSTUDY.[5]

Complexity of the current payment structure

3.3 YA replaces five income support payments for young people with a single payment and reduces thirteen different rates of payment to five. DSS stated that differences between payments such as AUSTUDY and social security payments can lead to unintended overpayments, gaps in payment and unnecessary complexities in transferring from one payment to the other.[6]

3.4 Evidence to the Committee generally supported the simplification in the payment structure for young people.[7] Some groups claimed, however, that some complexities in the payment structure remain.[8]

Support for young people needing to leave home for work or study purposes

3.5 Several organisations noted that the increased rate of YA for young people living away from home will benefit young people who are living apart from their families for work or study reasons.[9] Some organisations noted that students, in particular, will benefit as many have to live away from home for study reasons.[10] Some groups claimed that certain groups, such as unemployed 16-17 year olds, will lose entitlements.[11]

3.6 DSS stated that RA will be available under YA to young people who are independent and live away from their parents and to dependent young people who need to live away from home to undertake approved activities. Currently, only students receiving the student homeless rate of AUSTUDY can access RA.[12] The Department noted that giving students access to RA ‘removes one of the central disincentives for young people to take up, or remain in, full-time study and significantly improves housing affordability for this group. This measure is of particular benefit to young people from rural areas.’[13]

Assistance for 16-17 year olds

3.7 DSS stated that under 18 year-olds who have not completed secondary school will be expected to participate in full-time education or training to be eligible for YA, unless they are exempt from this requirement. These exemptions include homelessness, illness, traumatic home circumstances, substance abuse, learning difficulties or other circumstances which make it unreasonable to expect the young person to be in full time education or training. In these circumstances YA would be payable to young people under the age of 18 years.[14]

3.8 DSS emphasised that 16 and 17 year olds ‘will continue to gain support. They will gain financial support because they will be eligible for the youth allowance. The only way they will not be eligible for the youth allowance in terms of financial support is if it is tested that their parents are able to support them...I cannot think of an example of a young person who would find themselves without financial support either from their parents or from the government.’[15]

3.9 Several groups recognised that in principle it is not unreasonable to require young people under the age of 18 to participate in a range of education, training and jobseeking activities in order to qualify for YA and to improve their employment prospects.[16]

3.10 Some groups argued that the Government should also provide a viable set of alternatives for those young people unlikely to benefit from schooling or training programs and that individualised case management should be provided for these young people.[17]

Parental means testing for 18 to 20 year olds

3.11 DSS stated that a common means test for all young people up to the age of 21 is critical to a ‘common’ payment structure and in removing disincentives for young people to remain in education. Currently, students are subject to parental means testing whereas unemployed people over the age of 18 are not.[18]

3.12 Some groups claimed that the proposed measure by extending the period of dependency, will require many low income families, in particular, to continue to support their unemployed children financially for an extended period which could impose a heavy financial burden on these families.[19]

3.13 DSS stated, however, that two-thirds of the people in the age group 18 to 20 who are currently unemployed will not be affected by the parental means test and most of these are children from low income, pensioner or beneficiary families. These people will continue to receive the maximum rate of YA. DSS noted that under the YA arrangements, the total financial assistance to a family may increase (depending on family circumstances), even though the payment to the young unemployed person in the family has been reduced.[20]

Independence criteria

3.14 DSS stated that YA ensures that where family support is not available, or young people have clearly established their financial independence from their parents, they will be regarded as ‘independent’ and thus not subject to the parental means test.[21]

3.15 Some groups claimed that the provisions for independence should be eased, both to align the definition of ‘marriage-like relationship’ to that elsewhere in the social security system and to shorten the period through which young people demonstrate a commitment to self support.[22] Some groups also argued that the definition of full and part-time work in the Bill needed to be reviewed.[23]

3.16 DSS stated that YA arrangements represent a ‘reasonable compromise’ between the different provisions currently applying to those in married or de facto relationships.[24] DSS also noted that the YA work history criteria are considerably more relaxed than those currently applying to students but tighter for unemployed people. This compromise is aimed at deterring intending students from deferring studies in order to avoid the parental means test when they commence studies.[25]

4. recommendation

4.1 The Committee reports to the Senate that it has considered the Social Security Legislation Amendment (Youth Allowance) Bill 1997 and recommends that the Bill proceed.

Senator Sue Knowles

November 1997



Social Security Legislation Amendment (Youth Allowance) Bill 1997

Senator Kay Denman
Senator Mike Forshaw
Senator Belinda Neal
Senator Natasha Stott Despoja
Senator Meg Lees

1 Introduction

This bill makes far-reaching changes to the system of income support for young Australians.

Labor and the Australian Democrats accept that the current array of income support for young people is complex and in need of reform, and welcome some aspects of the bill, namely:

  • the increases in rates of payment for some young people;
  • improved flexibility which allows young people to combine part-time study with job search and other activities;
  • the extension of rent assistance to full-time students who are required to live away from home for study related reasons;
  • payment of the higher 'independent' rate for full-time students in defacto relationships of more than two years standing.

But these improvements come at a price, to be paid by 16 and 17 year old Australians who have not finished year 12 and who are looking for work, and by 18 to 20 year old Australians who are unable to find a job, and their families.

In our view this price is unacceptable. The young Australians to whom this bill denies help are precisely the young Australians who most need our help. These are young Australians who face the most severe barriers to their future participation in education, training and employment. They are looking for work in a labour market which already works against them.

The government hopes that the introduction of Youth Allowance will simplify the system of payments for young people, remove disincentives to continue education and inconsistencies between payments for young people and other social security payments. In our view the bill fails to reduce complexity and indeed introduces additional complexities in some cases. It also introduces arrangements which, in many cases, exacerbate disincentives to continue education and which are inconsistent with other provisions of the Social Security Act.

2 Withdrawing income support 16 and 17 year olds who leave education without completing year 12

Under proposed subsection 543A of the Bill, 16 and 17 year olds who are not in education and who have left school without finishing year 12, or who have not been exempted from this requirement by the Secretary, will not qualify for an income support payment. As a consequence, they will not qualify for any of the education, labour market assistance or other programs which might assist their transition from school to the workforce.

Under proposed subsection 543A(2), these young people may qualify for a Youth Allowance in some circumstances. The Department's submission[26] provides some indication of what these circumstances might be - homelessness, family violence or abuse, no education place available - although during evidence the Department stated[27] that the guidelines were 'only a little more advanced than you see them in [the Department's submission]'.

There is no provision in the bill for the making of guidelines to inform the Secretary's decision about this exemption. On the basis of evidence presented to us, we are not confident that the exemptions will be sufficiently flexible to allow for payment in the full range and diversity of circumstances which might lead a young person to leave education without finishing year 12.

We agree with witnesses that that 'there needs to be a greater recognition of the diversity of situations which need to be accommodated for those who are under 18 years of age'[28].

The Committee canvassed the reasons why some young people choose to leave school without finishing year 12 and the effect the withdrawal of income support might have on these young people and their families. The views expressed to the committee were very much in keeping with current research about the causes of early school leaving, and our attention was drawn to a number of contributing factors, including young people's family and emotional problems, violence and sexual abuse, alcohol and other drugs, alienation and depression, inappropriate curriculum and pedagogy and unsuitable learning environments:

'It is home circumstances, their own personal literacy and numeracy, education issues, that keep them from being at school. Family issues come up a lot'[29].

'They flee the school system because for them school has for some years been an experience with which they are not coping. More young people flee the school system because... they feel they do not belong there and because they feel they are not wanted there than they flee the school system seeking income support'[30].

Submissions and witnesses consistently cited increased family tension and family breakdown, increased reliance on emergency relief and increased crime as possible consequences of the withdrawal of income support for these young people.

We note that the government is proposing to abolish income support for these young people at the same time as it has made substantial cuts to education and labour market programs, and at a time when entry level jobs continue to disappear. The introduction of the Youth Allowance is not accompanied by other measures which support early intervention to address the reasons why young people leave education before finishing year 12, which improve the access or affordability of post-school education, or which create entry level jobs for unemployed young people. The introduction of Youth Allowance is not augmented by the provision of additional resources to schools to cope with the more than 20,000 young people expected to remain in, or return to school, despite Departmental advice that up to an additional $140 million would be required to deal with this influx of students.

We agree that 'forcing young people to stay at school in order to get an income... is a dubious, incomplete and probably counterproductive approach to the problems of youth unemployment and early school leaving'[31].

In our view, these young Australians are precisely the group who would benefit most from the intensive intervention that case management has to offer. They are precisely the group who will find it most difficult to find a job which provides decent wages and a rewarding career, and who would benefit most from the assistance which can be provided under case management arrangements. As the Australian Youth Policy and Action Coalition[32] recommends:

'what we would like to see is that there be another option for those young people that would allow then to enter into a youth allowance activity agreement and, as part of that, they would have immediate access to case management'.

In our view, the requirement that a young person aged under 18 must be in education or have finished year 12 to qualify for Youth Allowance should be omitted from the bill. Young people aged under 18 who are not in education and who have not finished year 12 should be able to enter into a Youth Allowance Activity Agreement and that agreement should allow for a case manager to be appointed for that person.

3 When is a young person independent?

Many of the submissions and witnesses drew attention to the assumptions about independence which underlie the Youth Allowance eligibility provisions. In the government's view[33] the proposed Youth Allowance arrangements 'reinforce the government's philosophy that families should support young people until they are independent'.

In practice, this is achieved through the imposition of parental income, assets and actual means tests for young unemployed people aged under 21, which would see government support for families with young people begin to be reduced once family income exceeds $23,400 a year.

This is clearly at odds with both the current body of law, and with community expectations. As Welfare Rights points out:

'Young people start to become civilly and criminally responsible from 16 and most definitely from 18 years of age.

In most cases, the legal obligation to pay child support ceases once a child turns 18; eligibility for the family tax initiative ceases once a child turns 18. As the Australian Youth Policy and Action Coalition[34] points out, if parents fail to, or cannot, support their under 18 year olds:

'there will be somebody who is going to pick up the care and protection for that young person because there is a responsibility. Basically, the buck stops somewhere, but what happens in a situation when you are over 18? Those laws do not exist.

In its evidence the Department was unable to provide any substantive justification for selecting 21 as the age at which a young person who is not a full-time student should be considered to be independent and so not subject to the parental income, assets and actual means tests, saying only that 'it is a judgement about what is a reasonable age'[35].

In general terms, under the proposed arrangements young unemployed people will find it more difficult to qualify for an 'independent' rate of payment. Young unemployed people are less likely to be able to demonstrate that they have been 'self-supporting'; they are less likely to be able to demonstrate that they are a 'member of a couple'; and, their decision to live away from home will have to be approved by the Secretary as being for study-or work-related reasons before independent status can be attained.

For example, the Australian Youth Policy and Action Coalition[36] drew our attention to an inconsistency between the definition of full time employment to be used in relation to the definition of independence and that 'currently being used with employment placements in the new employment assistance scheme, which is 15 hours rather that 30 hours for full time'. Similar views were expressed by the National Youth Coalition for Housing[37]:

'forcing people to move back home who have worked for six months or a year and then lose their job... the bill says that that person would not have been working long enough to be assumed independent.'

Unless they can demonstrate independence, young people's (aged up to 21 if unemployed or up to 25 if a student) eligibility for payment will be determined on the basis of their parents' income, assets and actual means. In our view this is inconsistent with community expectations, and in effect reduces the level of assistance available for young unemployed people in low income families, families which are already struggling to make ends meet in the wake of the Howard government's first two budgets.

In our view, the existing arrangements (that is, personal income and assets tests only) for young people who are not full-time students should be retained.

In our view young unemployed people who have reached the age of 18 should be regarded as independent and the parental income, assets and actual means should not apply. The bill should be amended to restore the current definition of 'self-supporting' for young unemployed people.

We also reject the notion that structural disincentives to continue in education can, or should, be ameliorated by diminishing access to income support for unemployed young people.

Any consideration of this issue would be incomplete without reference to the recent regressive changes made to the AUSTUDY scheme. Prior to these changes the age of independence for AUSTUDY was being reduced, and would have been 21 years in 1997. We note that the incremental change to a lower age of independence was always perceived to be a vital part of the incentives to study facilitated by AUSTUDY.

An estimated 125,000 students who would otherwise have access to greater financial support to pursue education were adversely affected by the Federal government's changes to the AUSTUDY eligibility criteria in 1997, where the age of independence was raised to 25 years.

Young people currently leave their studies because AUSTUDY is inadequate, not because unemployment is a more attractive alternative. The disincentives currently lie with the lower level of AUSTUDY payments, the stricter eligibility criteria, the heavy reliance on parental means testing and the lack of access to rent assistance, some of which have been addressed the low income families in the Youth Allowance proposal.

4 Exemption from liquid assets waiting period

We note that the Social Security Legislation Amendment (Parenting and Other Measures) Bill currently before the Parliament gives effect to a 1997 budget measure to 'apply consistent hardship rules to waiting periods for Newstart Allowance and other related payments'. The provisions of proposed section 549A(3) do not appear to be consistent with the arrangements to be put in place by the amending legislation.

In our view the exemption from the liquid assets waiting period should reflect the government's proposed definition of 'severe financial hardship' (noting that Labor and the Australian Democrats do not support the government's proposed additional requirement that the severe financial hardship must have arisen because the person has incurred unavoidable and essential expenditure).

5 Newly arrived resident's waiting period

We note that a two year newly arrived resident's waiting period is to apply to young people claiming Youth Allowance who enter Australia after 1 January 1993. This is inconsistent with the newly arrived resident's waiting period applying to most other social security payments.

In our view the retrospective application of the waiting period to young people who entered the country nearly 5 years ago is untenable.

Youth Allowance will replace Family Payment for 16 and 17 year old secondary students who do not otherwise qualify for AUSTUDY. Following substantial debate in the Senate in late 1996, amendments which would have applied the two year waiting period to Family Payment were withdrawn. The effect of this bill is to apply a two year newly arrived resident's waiting period to payments for young people who would otherwise have qualified for Family Payment, and we note that this is clearly inconsistent with the majority view of the Senate.

In Labor's view the two year waiting period for newly arrived residents should only apply to young people who enter Australia after 4 March 1997 (the commencement of the Social Security Legislation Amendment (Newly Arrived Resident's Waiting Periods) Act 1997).

The Australian Democrats have consistently opposed the imposition of a two year waiting period on social security payments and are of the view that this provision should be omitted from the bill.

6 Seasonal workers

In the 1997 budget the government announced that it would be introducing, from 1 July 1998, preclusion periods for high income seasonal or intermittent workers. Under the measures, persons earning more than 'average weekly earnings' during a season or under a contract would have to wait for some unspecified period before being able to access social security payments.

Proposed section 553C introduces these arrangements for Youth Allowance. However the bill makes no provision for definitions of the term 'seasonal or intermittent worker'; nor does it specify under what circumstances the Secretary might determine that a person is not eligible for a payment because the person's income is 'enough' to maintain themselves and their families.

The substantive legislation giving effect to this measure has not yet been introduced in the Parliament. In our view the measure as it applies to Youth Allowance is properly debated in the context of the substantive legislation.

7 'Member of a couple' and 'member of a YA couple'

We welcome the extension of the criteria for independence to include young full-time students in defacto relationships of at least two years standing, but note that young people will find it difficult to demonstrate this.

We note also that this represents a diminution of current arrangements for young unemployed people. Currently the rates of most primary income support payments vary with whether or not a person is a 'member of a couple' - with members of couples generally being paid a lower rate than single people. The definition is also relevant to establishing a person's eligibility for sole parent pension (or, in future, the rate of parenting payment) - a person who is a member of a couple is clearly not eligible.

For young people under 21 however, the 'member of a couple' rate of payment is significantly higher than the rate paid to single young people. Young unemployed people, who under current arrangements would qualify for this higher rate, will now have to establish that they have been a member of a couple for at least two years before receiving the higher rate, an arrangement which is inconsistent with the provisions applying for other social security payments.

The bill contains a number of additional and complex provisions to deal with situations where a person is a member of a Youth Allowance couple, including providing for the person's partner's income and assets to be disregarded, and the person's parents' means to be included.

In our view the bill should be amended to ensure that a young person who is not undertaking full time study can be regarded as independent if they are 'a member of a couple' as defined by the Social Security Act 1991.

8 Indexation arrangements

The indexation arrangements for the various rates of Youth Allowance set out in Module B of the Youth Allowance Rate Calculator provide for annual indexation. We note that, for unemployed people aged 18 to 21, this represents a change from six monthly to annual indexation, and that the annual indexation arrangements for Youth Allowance are inconsistent with the six monthly indexation arrangements for other primary income support payments made under the Social Security Act.

In our view the bill should be amended to provide that all rates of Youth Allowance be indexed every six months, in April and September each year, in line with the indexation arrangements for pensions and other allowances.

9 'Student income bank'

We welcome the 'student income bank' arrangements which allow full-time students relatively more generous income testing arrangements to encourage them to supplement their income during semester breaks. We note however that the definition of income to apply under the 'income bank' arrangements in effect reduces the amount students can earn before their payment is affected. In our view the current income 'free area' for students strikes the right balance between self-support and government assistance, and we recommend that the 'income free area' be increased to the gross income equivalent of the existing 'free area'.

We note too that these arrangements are not extended to young people who are not full-time students. The government’s abolition of the earnings credit scheme (the equivalent of the 'student income bank' for young unemployed people) in the l996 budget removed a significant incentive for young unemployed people to take up whatever part-time or casual work was available, thus maintaining some minimal connection with the labour force. In our view this incentive should be restored.

10 Transitional and consequential provisions

We note that the bill does not contain any transitional provisions. There is, for example, nothing in the bill to give effect to the Minister's announcement[38] on 17 June 1997 that 'unemployed people age 18 - 20 receiving benefits at the time of the announcement will be grandfathered'.

Evidence from the Department of Social Security[39] during the hearing on the bill indicated some of the critical decisions on the implementation of the Youth Allowance are yet to be taken:

'Other decisions have either been taken or we expect them to be taken concerning the arrangements for students who are over 25 years of age, and the pensioner education supplement [or] the loan scheme which currently operates in relation to AUSTUDY.

In the absence of firm transitional provisions it is likely that the implementation of the Youth Allowance, scheduled for 1 July 1998, will not go smoothly.

Students will transfer from Family Payment or AUSTUDY to the Youth Allowance in the middle of the academic year, losing as well as gaining entitlements at the switch over point. Changes in the income testing and 'student income bank' arrangements in particular could disrupt post-school students' financial arrangements.

Young unemployed people granted Youth Training Allowance after 17 June 1997 and who have not found a job before the switch over point may find that their payments are reduced because they are no longer considered to be independent; those currently on Newstart may have their payments reduced or cancelled because of the imposition of parental income, assets and actual means tests from that date.

The Department[40] 'hopes that many of these young people who are now on Youth Training Allowance will return to school at the start of next year [1998], rather than the middle of the year'. 'Hoping' that young people do what is in their best interests in the absence of firm legislative arrangements, and when transitional and consequential arrangements are unknown is not good enough. We strongly urge the government to delay consideration of the bill until such time as the transitional and consequential provisions have been introduced into the Parliament.

Senator Kay Denman

(ALP, Tasmania)

Senator Mike Forshaw

(ALP, New South Wales)

Senator Belinda Neal

(ALP, New South Wales)

Senator Natasha Stott Despoja

(AD, South Australia)

Senator Meg Lees

(AD, South Australia)





Youth Network of Tasmania


Darwin Community Legal Service


Northern Territory Council of Social Service


Northern Territory University Students Union


Australian Rural Youth


Alice Springs Youth Accommodation and Support Services Inc


Housing Assistance Service Inc


Anglicare NT


Department of Social Security


Youth Coalition of the ACT


Welfare Rights Centre


Australian Youth Policy & Action Coalition Inc


Darwin and Rural Workers with Youth Network


Brotherhood of St Laurence


National Youth Coalition for Housing


National Union of Students


Australian Council of Social Service


Anglicare Australia


Wollongong Youth Accommodation & Support Association Inc


The University of New England Postgraduate Association


Students’ Representative Council - University of Sydney


Flinders University Union Incorporated


Youth Outreach - NT


NSW Farmers Association


Belconnen Unemployed Youth Taskforce



A public hearing was held on the Bill on 30 October 1997 in Senate Committee Room 2S1.

Committee Members in attendance

Senator Sue Knowles (Chairman)
Senator Alan Eggleston
Senator Michael Forshaw
Senator Brenda Gibbs
Senator Dee Margetts
Senator Belinda Neal
Senator Karen Synon


Australian Youth Policy & Action Coalition Inc. (AYPAC)

Ms Carol Croce, Policy Officer

National Youth Coalition for Housing

Ms Sally Watson, Co-ordinator

National Union of Students

Mr John Carey, President
Ms Carmen Jauregui, Welfare Officer

Brotherhood of St Laurence

Ms Helen MacDonald, Research & Policy Officer

The Salvation Army

Captain David Eldridge, Territorial Consultant for Community Development

Welfare Rights Centre

Ms Carla Mullins, Policy Projects Coordinator
Mr Stephen Langman, Solicitor, National Welfare Rights Network
Ms Bronwyn Richards, Welfare Rights Advocate, National Welfare Rights Network

Department of Social Security

Mr Jeff Whalan, First Assistant Secretary
Ms Peta Winzar, Assistant Secretary, Youth Allowance Implementation Branch
Mr Rod Berrill, Director, Youth Allowance Policy Section