Tasmanians who are depending on JobSeeker payments in the on-going fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic are right to be disappointed with the Federal Government’s refusal to back down on removing payments and instead increasing them by just $3.57 a day.
Shadow Minister for Workplace Relations Sarah Lovell said the increase is astoundingly low.
“An increase of $50 a fortnight as Tasmania continues to struggle back from COVID is woefully inadequate and an insult to those who have lost their jobs during the pandemic,” Ms Lovell said.
“Tasmania will disproportionately feel the impact of this decision and it will rip millions out of our economy – and that’s money that will not be going to small business.
“The payments were far too low before the pandemic and COVID has not gone away, it is now more important than ever for a significant increase.
“The Premier Peter Gutwein’s efforts on JobKeeper have been almost non-existent. He has failed miserably to lobby his Canberra colleagues for a meaningful increase to JobSeeker and now everyday Tasmanians will suffer.
“This is a failure by the Liberal Government which refuses to recognise and acknowledge that it is vital that Tasmanians receive a living wage.
“It is impossible to be able to successfully look for work when you’re living in poverty.
“The Government has failed to provide an adequate increase to JobSeeker payments and ultimately it will be Tasmanians that feel the pinch.”
Sarah Lovell MLC
Shadow Minister for Workplace Relations