Media Release by The Hon Christian Porter MP

Welfare reform delivers better childcare

Passage of the Government’s Omnibus Welfare Bill delivers the capacity to provide much needed support to Australian families through more affordable and accessible child care.

Minister for Social Services, Christian Porter, thanked cross bench senators who worked with the Government to ensure reasonable and sensible welfare reforms could be endorsed by Parliament.

“The Government has always said that Family Tax Benefit (FTB) should be the source of savings,” Minister Porter said.

“There are clearly better ways to allocate money inside the FTB system to provide better support for hard working families and encourage participation in work through a better child care system.

“Australian taxpayers provide families with almost $20 billion a year in FTB.

“It is reasonable and sensible to pause the annual increase in FTB payments for two years to deliver the benefits of generational reform of child care.

“No recipient of FTB will have a reduction in payments as a consequence of these reforms.”

The Minister said Labor’s approach during the debate reflected its double-standard.

“While railing against the Government for proposing measured, reasonable reform, it completely ignores the fact that, in government, it routinely paused or reduced a number of the indexation mechanism that apply within the FTB system,’ Minister Porter said.

“Labor took billions of dollars out of the FTB system – but did not invest one cent into the most urgent need for hardworking Australian families – available and affordable child care.

“Instead, Labor’s savings were squandered by its financial mismanagement which saw a Budget surplus it inherited blow out with $191 billion in deficits and projected debt of $123 billion.”