House debates

Monday, 20 August 2018


Select Committee on Intergenerational Welfare Dependence; Report

11:22 am

Photo of Pat ConroyPat Conroy (Shortland, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Assistant Minister for Infrastructure) Share this | Hansard source

by leave—I want to echo the very reasonable and wise words from the member for McMillan. I don't want to take up too much of the chamber's time other than to make the point that I've been heartened by the spirit of cooperation that Select Committee on Intergenerational Welfare Dependence has started with this process. It's very important for us to focus on what we can do to break the cycle of entrenched disadvantage, which was the nub of what the member for McMillan was talking about. We will certainly not be demonising welfare. Welfare can be defined as a social effort designed to promote the basic physical and material wellbeing of people in need. It's as simple as that. It is not a dirty word. Often, many people who have made it to this place have relied on welfare at some stage of their life. It's part of the social contract of this nation that we look after people in need. This committee is about how we break cycles of entrenched social disadvantage, particularly for children who grow up in households with a disproportionate dependence on welfare. We've been heartened by the start of the committee. I look forward to this committee working in a truly bipartisan manner to make some strong recommendations for this government and future governments on how we can break that cycle. I commend the report to the House.


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