House debates

Thursday, 4 July 2019

Questions without Notice

Newstart Allowance

2:39 pm

Photo of Anthony AlbaneseAnthony Albanese (Grayndler, Australian Labor Party, Leader of the Opposition) Share this | | Hansard source

My question is again addressed to the Prime Minister. Would an increase in the rate of Newstart stimulate consumer demand and economic activity and therefore jobs?

Photo of Scott MorrisonScott Morrison (Cook, Liberal Party, Prime Minister) Share this | | Hansard source

At the last election, we put forward very clearly our plans to ensure that we could boost the incomes of Australians. The priority we provided for that was for working Australians, through the delivery of tax relief. That was the priority we set out. The opposition, at that election, did not put forward any plans to increase the rate of Newstart. In fact, they never set out any potential cost that that might impose on the budget. It was not our plan to do that. It was our plan to continue to go through the six-monthly indexation of such payments. That is the process we will continue to follow in relation to those social security payments. So we have no plans to increase social security payments for Newstart beyond what is the normal six-monthly indexation using the measures that are always in place, which is the same policy that was taken to the election by the Labor Party.