For several years, media outlets like The Australian ran a campaign against the so-called ‘blowout’ in welfare spending, backing claims made by the Coalition Government that nearly half of the population receives more in welfare than they pay in tax.
The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) 2019 welfare report has debunked this myth, stating that the nation’s welfare bill has levelled at $130 billion over the past three years. The report also states the proportion of working-age Australians receiving income support declined from 22% in 1999 to 15% in 2018:
Income support payments assist people with the everyday costs of living. Unemployment payments provide assistance to those who cannot find work. Parenting payments are paid in recognition of the impact caring for a young child can have on a parent’s capacity to work.
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