Australia’s 1.2million JobSeeker recipients are set to lose their $150 coronavirus boost from tomorrow.
April Fool’s Day will see the dole fall by $95 from $715.70 a fortnight to $620.80.
JobSeeker, previously known as Newstart, is permanently increasing, in real terms adjusted for inflation, for the first time since 1994, rising from the pre-pandemic level of $565.70 a fortnight.
From Thursday, unemployed JobSeeker recipients will have to apply for 15 jobs a month, rising to 20 from July.
Australia’s 1.4million JobSeeker recipients are set to lose their $150 coronavirus boost from tomorrow. April Fool’s Day will see the dole fall by $95 from $715.70 a fortnight to $620.80
JobSeeker changes starting on April 1, 2021
The $150 coronavirus supplement is ending
The dole fall by $95 from $715.70 a fortnight to $620.80
JobSeeker, previously known as Newstart, is permanently increase in real terms adjusted for inflation for the first time since 1994
Base rate was $565.70 a fortnight just before the pandemic hit
JobSeeker recipients will be required to apply for 15 jobs a month
Despite the changes, 37 per cent of Australians are unaware the JobSeeker coronavirus supplement is ending on Thursday, a survey of 1,015 adults commissioned by financial comparison website Finder found.
Even more alarmingly, 29 per cent of survey respondents thought JobSeeker was in fact increasing.
Baby boomers were more informed with 73 per cent of them being aware the unemployment benefit would be decreasing, compared with just 57 per cent of Millennials.
While 805,200 people were officially unemployed in February, the JobSeeker ranks stand at 1.2million with the payment covering some Youth Allowance, sickness and bereavement welfare recipients.
Australia’s unemployment rate last month fell to 5.8 per cent from 6.3 per cent as 88,700 new jobs were created.
The number of payroll jobs in Australia, across all industries, is now 0.2 per cent above the level of March 2020, when the World Health Organisation declared a Covid pandemic.
The recovery, however, is uneven with the number of accommodation and food services jobs falling by 11.1 per cent between March last year and March 2021, as new working-from-home arrangements hurt the trade of city centre cafes, new Australian Bureau of Statistics data showed.
From Thursday, unemployed JobSeeker recipients will have to apply for 15 jobs a month, rising to 20 from July. Pictured is a cafe worker at Manly on Sydney’s Northern Beaches
With the hospitality sector still struggling, one in five households have less than $1,000 in bank savings, the ME Bank’s Household Financial Comfort Report showed.
An alarming 8 per cent of people had less than $100 in savings. One in ten households had between $100 and $1,000 in the bank.
Among these desperate people, only 3 per cent said they could maintain their existing lifestyles for six months if they lost their job, the survey of 1,500 households revealed.
Finder’s head of consumer research Graham Cooke said the end of the $150 boost to the dole would see some unemployed people struggle.
‘Welfare cuts may impact some people’s ability to pay their bills, mortgage payments or debt,’ he said.
In March last year, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg announced a $550 coronavirus supplement would be added to the $565.70 base rate of JobSeeker, which effectively doubled fortnightly dole payments to $1,115.70.
Just 57 per cent of Millennials were aware that JobSeeker would be decreasing from April 1, a Finder survey found
The coronavirus supplement was diluted to $250 on September 25 and diluted again to $150 on January 1.
The end of the coronavirus supplement also coincides with the end of JobKeeper wage subsidies.
They finished on March 28, 2021, putting an end to $1,000 a fortnight payments for those working 20 hours or more a week, with everyone else getting $650.