Raise the Rate campaign

Australian Council of Social Services | Impact area » Tackling Inequality

The Issue » The biggest risk of living in poverty in Australia continues to be having to rely on the unemployment payment, Newstart, for income. Newstart has not been increased in real terms in 25 years despite real increases in other social security payments and wages. This failure to increase the allowance means that Newstart is now contributing to inequality in Australia, with recipients unable to afford the basics like keeping the lights on and putting food on the table. Research reports continue to show that people relying on Newstart for their income are the most severely financially deprived.

The Project » ACOSS seeks to continue its campaign for an increase to the base rate of Newstart and other allowances by at least $75 per week. In addition, ACOSS wants to ensure that allowances are indexed to wages so that these payments do not fall behind community living standards in the future. The campaign has been successful in pushing for change since its initial funding in November 2018 and is employing four strategies to Raise the Rate: changing the story; mobilising high-profile and diverse influencers; building a grassroots and online campaign, and; building parliamentary support.

More details to follow in the forthcoming Impact Fund 2019 Prospectus.

The Australian Council of Social Service is a national advocate for action to reduce poverty and inequality and is the peak body for the community services sector in Australia. Its vision is for a fair, inclusive and sustainable Australia where all individuals and communities can participate in, and benefit from, social and economic life.

Funding Request »
Total ask: $150,000
Impact Fund pledge: $35,000
Duration: 3 years $115,000

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