Con­cerns on drug-use penalty

Pilbara News - - Federal Budget 2017 - Phoebe Wearne

Tough new com­pli­ance and drug-test­ing regimes pro­posed for peo­ple on so­cial se­cu­rity have sparked warn­ings from wel­fare groups.

Wel­fare Rights and Ad­vo­cacy Ser­vice ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Kate Beau­mont warned of un­in­tended con­se­quences of with­hold­ing pay­ments and mak­ing it more dif­fi­cult to get sup­port.

“There’s a com­mu­nity cost in that they’ll turn to or­gan­i­sa­tions to get emer­gency re­lief, or it could be that they do crime,” Ms Beau­mont said.

Trea­surer Scott Mor­ri­son re­vealed the Gov­ern­ment would ran­domly drug test 5000 new wel­fare re­cip­i­ents. Any­one who tested pos­i­tive would be placed on wel­fare quar­an­tin­ing, while those who failed more than once would be re­ferred for treat­ment.

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