We are generally opposed to the passing of this Bill into legislation.
We acknowledge the rationale for this Bill is reducing long-term benefit dependency by moving people to work or to more actively seeking work. These are goals that we as a movement are also committed to through our work with beneficiaries and their families via our community ministry centres and corps (churches).
But we submit that there are better ways to work towards these goals rather than trying to induce job-seeking behaviours by imposing a raft of punitive sanctions on beneficiaries under this Bill, particularly if these sanctions will subsequently adversely affect their children. We believe that we and other social service providers are both currently delivering some of these better ways and trying to develop new and innovative ways to achieve these goals.