Single parents will get a significant helping hand in the federal budget, with the government raising the cut-off age for children from eight years old to 14.
At the moment, single parents receive about $961 a fortnight, but are shifted to the JobSeeker payment when their child turns eight, receiving about $176 less a fortnight.
The new cut-off age means parents could get a total of $27,456 more before moving over to the JobSeeker payment.
“Eight was far too low. We think 14 is the right balance,” Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said.
“Fourteen is the period in which a student starts to gain more independence and doesn't need the same level of support at home that a younger child does. Eight was far too low. An eight-year-old needs mum or dad or their carer to cook them dinner.”
“A 14 -year-old starts to, in today’s world, to move into that change into adulthood. And we think this is absolutely the right balance as well. We want … for people who’ve been single parents, where it’s possible, to move into full-time employment over a period of time.”
The change means single parents, primarily women, will receive an additional four years on the payment. The move will cost the government around $1.9 billion.
More Centrelink assistance
Aussies on the Centrelink JobSeeker payment are also set to see a small cash boost in the federal budget.
JobSeeker payments are expected to be boosted “modestly” for all ages, not just those over 55 - as was reported since last week.
However, the boost is set to fall short of the “substantial” amount recommended by the government's own review panel.
We will have to wait until the budget is released tomorrow night to find out exactly how much more cash those on Centrelink will receive.