Bill's Media Releases


The Minister for Employment, Bill Shorten has said that more than 1 million Australians on income support will be worse off under an Abbott government.

 Tony Abbot has announced that he will rip $1.1 billion from around 1.4 million income support recipients if elected in September.

 A Liberal government will abolish Labor’s Income Support Bonus, making it harder for Australians on income support make ends meet.

 The Income Support Bonus provides $210 extra each year for eligible singles and $350 to eligible couples, paid in two installments in March and September each year.

 The payments are tax-free, not means tested and will keep pace with inflation.

 The Income Support Bonus helps households cope with unexpected costs like urgent repairs on the family car or essential appliances, medical expenses, bills that are higher than expected and other emergencies.

State Number of income support recipients that will be worse off
Australian Capital Territory 13,596
New South Wales 440,355
Northern Territory 19,965
Queensland 293,498
South Australia 117,299
Tasmania 42,290
Victoria 338,074
Western Australia 112,741
Unknown 910
Total 1,378,757

 This is in addition to the Liberal’s plan to cut the School Kids Bonus which delivers $410 for primary school kids and $820 for secondary students to help low income families with school costs.

 The Liberal Party also plans to cut the $4 billion Low Income Superannuation Contribution.

 The Income Support Bonus is in addition to Labor’s $300 million Budget announcement to support Australians into work which includes an increase to the amount income support recipients are able to earn, from $62 to $100 a fortnight, before their payment is affected.

 We make no apology for making jobs and training our priority.

 The Gillard Labor Government believes that everyone should benefit from the dignity, challenge and experience that come from having a job, especially people who have been trapped in a cycle of entrenched disadvantage.

 In addition to these Budget measures, the Government provides ongoing income support for parents, including:

  • Family Tax Benefit that helps with the cost of raising children, made up of two parts, Family Tax Benefit Part A and Part B;

  • Assistance with the cost of child care and help to locate a suitable provider to benefit children and enable parents to re-engage with the workforce; and

 An increase of $50 to the base rate of the Newstart Allowance comes with a price-tag of around $8 billion for single parents and around $13 billion for all.