Senator Andrew Bartlett has condemned the Federal Government’s response to the Community Affairs Committee report on the Welfare to Work legislation and the Australian Democrats’ amendments as just more whitewashing and propaganda.
The Government’s release trumpets the announcement of ‘key recommendations (of the Committee)being accepted as commonsense proposals’. However, it ignores that these ‘commonsense proposals’ will do absolutely nothing to prevent people having their incomes cut under this legislation. It also contains this quote:
"This is in contrast to proposals from the Australian Democrats which will do nothing to improve the prospects of moving people from welfare to work and are simply seeking to maintain the status quo."
"This is an outrageous smear and the latest in a long line of Government deceit on this fundamental issue," Senator Bartlett said.
The Federal Government’s ‘solution’ to welfare issues is to use propaganda and lies to cover up the fundamental fact that they are taking money away from the poor."
"Our proposals do not get in the way of people moving from welfare to work, they just stop income support being cut along the way."
"Over the last couple of months, the Government’s Minister in the Senate, Eric Abetz, has managed to avoid answering over 30 questions and supplementary questions asking how cutting people’s income helps them get a job. The deliberate strategy of avoiding the core flaw in this legislation can’t just be seen as side stepping one or two tricky questions; it is a campaign of deliberate dishonesty, smearing anyone who raises concerns about cuts to the incomes of welfare recipients as ‘doing nothing to improve the prospects of people moving from welfare to work’."
"Cutting people’s income makes it harder for them to get a job. It also makes it impossible for some to study and upgrade their skills."
"Government Senator’s who don’t support our amendment will be the ones getting in the way of improving people’s prosects of getting a job," Senator Bartlett concluded.