Catherine Yeomans, CEO Mission Australia is today calling on the Senate to block damaging cuts to social security contained in the Omnibus Savings and Child Care Bill. She said:

“It’s deeply concerning that the Omnibus Savings and Child Care Bill could cut up to $5.6b from social security which would reduce incomes of people who are unemployed, pensioners, single parents and students.

“The impact of these plans on the most vulnerable in our society would be significant. I urge Senate crossbenchers to ensure the Child Care Bill remains separate and does not come at the expense of the incomes of the poorest people in our country.

“Those least advantaged in our society should not be made to bear the brunt of budget savings.

“We believe the childcare package pays for itself. It should be considered on its own merits and split from the other savings measures. The childcare package should also provide for at least 15 hours of subsidised care for vulnerable children. This will improve access to quality early learning for children from vulnerable and disadvantaged backgrounds and improve the affordability of care for low and middle income families.

“We need the Government to reset its agenda and look at ways to reduce inequality and poverty in Australia rather than deepen the divide by cutting the incomes of the poorest. Income support is one of the most important and effective ways of preventing poverty. We continue to call on all political leaders to put reducing poverty at the centre of the policy agenda.”

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