The Business Council believes all Australians should be able to achieve their potential and welcomes the opportunity to make this submission to the Senate Community Affairs References Committee inquiry into the adequacy of Newstart and related payments and alternative mechanisms to determine the level of income support payments in Australia.
Australia’s long period of unbroken economic growth has seen higher living standards for all income groups. Alongside a labour market which has had continued robust employment growth over the last few years, Australians are participating in the labour market at the highest rates in history.
However, some people have nonetheless been left behind. Long periods of unemployment can, for example, make it difficult for people to move back into steady work and may put people at risk of relying on income support for much of their lives. Such entrenched disadvantage can, and too often does, reach across generations.