The Australian Greens have heeded the concerns of peak social services bodies in SA and will look into establishing a new, independent body to review decisions to cut off electricity and gas supplies to struggling households.
“When families are struggling to get by, the last thing they need is for their electricity to be shut-off,” South Australian Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.
“That’s why the Greens will work with our state colleagues to set up an independent body to review suppliers’ decisions to shut-off these services.
“Families can’t survive without gas and electricity, but currently there’s no safety net in place if they aren’t able to pay their bills on time.
“The families that are most affected by these shut-offs are those on low incomes.
“There are more than 34,000 job seekers receiving welfare payments in South Australia, with the majority of them living on the insufficient Newstart allowance.
“The Greens want to see more support for low income households and are pushing for the Newstart payment to be increased by $50 a week.
“We want a more caring and understanding system put in place that would give families a chance to get back on their feet.”
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