The introduction of concession fares on public transport for eligible unemployed people receiving newstart and youth allowances and asylum seekers is good news for those in South East Queensland. Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS) CEO Mark Henley said the Queensland Government’s announcement today shows it has taken on-board the advice of many advocates and industry experts who have advised better targeted concessions to ease cost-of-living pressures for low-income households.
It is time for the Queensland Government to respond to the advice it has been given and extend concessions for transport and electricity to all Health Care Card holders. Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS) CEO Mark Henley said next week’s State Budget provided the perfect opportunity for the government to heed the advice of many advocates and industry experts who have advised better targeting concessions to ease cost-of-living pressures for low-income households.
The Queensland Competition Authority's (QCA) announcement, on 31 May, outlining its final determination of regulated electricity prices for regional Queensland has brought little relief for families and individuals struggling with their electricity bills.
A new report released today reveals the interrelated nature of poverty and disadvantage and some of the key areas of concern in Queensland which need to be addressed, including violence in the home and education and health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people.
QCOSS has welcomed the agreement by the state and federal governments regarding disability services in Queensland, securing a more certain and empowered future for Queenslanders with disability.
QCOSS has welcomed a number of recommendations made in the QPC's draft report into electricity pricing, particularly moves to include the lowest-income households in the electricity concession scheme.
QCOSS CEO Mark Henley said the AER's decision meant a typical annual residential bill would decrease by about $17 in 2016-17, with similar reductions for the following three years, providing barely any financial relief to already struggling households.
At the start of Anti-Poverty Week, ACOSS and all eight State and Territory Councils of Social Service, are calling for the development of a national plan to tackle growing poverty and inequality in Australia, including setting targets to ensure the incomes of the lowest income earners increase at least at the pace of those in the middle.
Cairns homelessness organisations are heeding the call to “step up to end homelessness”, ahead of Homelessness Prevention Week (3 to 9 August 2015).
Today’s State Budget revealed positive signs the Queensland Government was listening to the community services sector, however it remains important the sector is engaged and consulted to ensure the needs of Queenslanders are adequately met.
A typical Queensland household will save a mere 14 cents a week following today’s announcement of electricity prices for 2015-16 by the Queensland Competition Authority. The small drop in the usage charge for electricity will deliver little benefit for many, with the fixed charge continuing to climb, now four times higher than it was three years ago.
The Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS) welcomes today’s Australian Energy Regulator (AER) draft Distribution Determination however more needs to be done to help vulnerable Queensland households. The decision to reduce the revenue which Queensland’s electricity network companies will be allowed to recover from costomers over the next five years means that the average household electricity bill will only decrease by approximately $34 in 2015-16.
The Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS) has welcomed the Queensland Government’s announcement today that they will delay electricity price deregulation for 12 months. QCOSS CEO Mark Henley said QCOSS had recommended the delay to ensure a number of critical issues were fully considered and addressed before deregulating electricity prices in South East Queensland, and it was pleased the government had listened.
Peak community and housing groups today called on the Commonwealth Government to work with them in developing a national housing strategy to address the worsening housing affordability crisis in Australia.
More than 7,000 Queensland households were disconnected for not paying an electricity bill between July and September last year, the highest quarterly rate of disconnections since 2011, according to figures released today by the Queensland Competition Authority.
With nearly 15 per cent of Queenslanders living below the poverty line, Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS) today calls on all candidates in the Queensland state election to be held on 31 January to commit to actions which will ensure the social and economic wellbeing for all. The QCOSS 2015 Queensland Election Platform outlines the key actions an elected government will need to take to achieve the vision of thousands of Queenslanders captured in the Queensland Plan.
It doesn’t matter where you live in Queensland, you will be facing a bleak Christmas if you are relying on government income support. QCOSS CEO Mark Henley said the latest Cost of Living Report which compares six places across Queensland for the first time, revealed that single unemployed people and single-parents were unable to afford a most basic standard of living and were therefore being forced to choose between foregoing essential items or risk slipping further into debt.
Community organisations today have welcomed AGL Energy Limited’s (AGL) $6m commitment to provide greater support for vulnerable energy customers.