The Australian Greens have welcomed changes to the youth allowance scheme, saying they will now lead to all students in regional areas being on an equal footing with one another.
"These reforms, which follow a review negotiated by the Greens, have removed the discrimination faced by students living in parts of the country who needed the independent rate of youth allowance for their studies," Greens' spokesperson for youth affairs, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said today.
"As an example, in Mount Gambier residents on one side of a street could not access the allowance, while their neighbours across the road could. That discrepancy will now be removed.
"In the long-term, the Greens want to see the eligibility criteria made simpler for students who have to move out of home to attend university.
"These changes, however, give this year's year 12 students, and future students, certainty about the rules of accessing the payment."
The reforms also include an increase in relocation scholarships.