Submission made online
I am strongly opposed to these changes to the Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Bill.
95% of preschool children are already enjoying ECE because of the effective Government initiative of 20 hours a week free ECE. This bill would punish families simply for being on the benefit.
I understand the Government’s concern about wise use of tax payers’ money and helping people to get off benefit, but I don’t think this is the way to do it.
I have a homeschooling friend who was recently widowed suddenly and unexpectedly. She would fall into this category and be forced to send her preschooler to an ECE and her school children to school. The children would be losing their way of life as well as losing their father.
I have another friend who has made a conscious choice to not use and ECE, if she were widowed, she would have to send her preschoolers to an ECE which would not match the stimulating, loving home environment she has created for her young family.
The freedom to choose is in serious jeopardy with this bill. And I also have huge concerns that if it starts with beneficiaries, who are the most vulnerable, it will spread to all families at a later date.
I urge all the decision makers involved with this to please reject this bill as being unfair, unsafe and unsuitable for solving the problems it purports to solve.