There’s no guarantee the government’s income support measures will last the full six months as initially touted, the Prime Minister has revealed in a press conference on Friday.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison could not provide any certainty when pressed on whether the JobKeeper and JobSeeker measures would last the entire six months, instead telling the conference his priority was getting Aussies back to work.
“I can give them the certainty that I want them to be back in their jobs, where they don't need it [JobKeeper or JobSeeker],” Morrison said.
“That's what we want. I mean, people don't want to be on JobKeeper and JobSeeker. They want to be in a job that's paying them.
“And that's what this plan is about - not to keep people on income support from the taxpayer, but to have a wage that's provided by a business that's successful and earning again and going forward and creating a strong economy.”
The Prime Minister’s vague response contrasts with his earlier, more definitive, announcement in April: “I have always considered six months as the period in which we have been operating and will operate these lifeline measures in the economy, which is the JobSeeker supplement and JobKeeper payment,” he said at the time.
JobSeeker boost legislated for 5 months, not 6
Australians were told the $550 Coronavirus Supplement would last a total of six months, however the Department of Social Services revealed to a Senate Select Committee on Covid-19 on 1 May that it will now last for just five.
The legislative end date for the period of the supplement is 24 September, five months after payments were stipulated to flow from (27 April). This means some eligible Australians may receive $1,100 less than they had planned for.
That means some Aussies, who are set to receive their first supplement payment on 11 May, will in fact miss out on at least one payment of $1,100, Senator Rachel Siewert confirmed.