成員 謝宜儒


(國際商務學系四年級)

 

               The social welfare in Australia    

Jack is a retired soldier, who is a person we met in Australia. After talking to him we knew some social welfare system in Australia. We talked what is the welfare for retired soldier, younger, seniors, people who are unemployment and so on. He opened the door for us about the social welfare, so the following report is about the social welfare.

 


The Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA) is the Australian Government's principal source of advice on social policy and is responsible for about a quarter of the government's budgetary outlays. FaHCSIA, through its Office for Indigenous Policy Coordination, is responsible for coordinating a whole of government approach to programs and services for Indigenous Australians, and has a central role in the Australian Government's arrangements in Indigenous Affairs.

 

FaHCSIA support and help :         

          families and children young people and students
  • working-age people

  • people with disabilities

    carers

    the aged

    people living in rural and remote areas

    people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness

    Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

    people from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds communities across the country. 
    Centrelink is a government agency delivering a range of Commonwealth services to the Australian community. Centrelink is set up so people can get more of the help they need in one place.

     

Centrelink offers a 'one-stop shop' for a range of services delivered on behalf of the Department of Family and Community Services, the Department of Transport and Regional Services, the Department of Employment, Workplace Relations and Small Business, the Department of Veterans' Affairs, the Department of Health and Aged Care, the Department of Education, Training and Youth Affairs, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry - Australia. Centrelink's customers include retired people, families, sole parents, people looking for work, people with a short-term incapacity, people with a disability, carers, widows, primary producers, students, young people, indigenous people and people from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds. Some of the programs that Centrelink can talk to you about are specifically for:

 

  • Job Seekers, including the Youth Allowance and New start Allowance. Young people, including study, and Assistance for Isolated Children.

    People in special circumstances, including Disability pensions, Health Care Cards and Crisis Payment.

  • Families, including Family Tax Benefit, Child Care Benefit, Parenting Allowance and Job Education and Training programs Centrelink can assist people in Australia with the many options that whenthey have for entering the workforce, returning to work or if they are considering starting a course or volunteering in their community. Centrelink have a range of services designed to help people make informed decisions about their education, training and employment options and pathways, services such as:

     

·       Job Placement Services - are the Australian Government funded recruitment services, with more than 400 organisations delivering services from over 2500 offices across Australia. ·     Job Network services - a national network of organisations dedicated to helping job seekers find and keep a job.

·      Australian JobSearch - an online database and search facility for jobs from the Job Network.

About Payments for Australian retirement are as following:

 

  • Age Pension - for retired people to ensure an adequate income in retirement.

    Who can get Age Pension?You may get Age Pension if you are aged 65 years and over if you are a man, or are above certain qualifying ages for women (see the ages chart below) and meet certain residence requirements, and have income and assets below a certain amount.

Qualifying ages for women to get the Age Pension

 

Depending on their date of birth, women qualify for Age Pension at different ages. By 2014, the minimum qualifying age for women will be 65 years, making it the same for everyone.

 

Date of Birth

 

Qualification Age

 

Before 30 June 1944

63

1 July 1944 to 31 December 1945

63.5

1 January 1946 to 30 June 1947

64

1 July 1947 to 31 December 1948

64.5

1 January 1949 and later

65

  • Widow Allowance (no new grants after 1 July 2005 unless born on or before 1 July 1955) - for older widowed, divorced or separated women without recent work experience.

     

Who can get Widow Allowance?You may get Widow Allowance if you are a woman who was born on or before 1 July 1955 and is not a member of a couple has become widowed, divorced or separated (including separated de facto) since turning 40 has no recent workforce experience - that is you haven't worked at least 20 hours a week for 13 weeks or more in the last year is an Australian resident, in Australia and not subject to the two year newly arrived residents waiting period satisfies one of the qualifying residence rules for Widow Allowance, and has income and assets below a certain amount.

Mature Age Allowance (no new grants from 20 September 2003) - for older people who are disadvantaged in finding work.

You qualify for Mature Age Allowance if you are 60 years of age or over but less than Age Pension age, and have no recent workforce experience (recent workforce experience means work of at least 20 hours a week for a total of 13 weeks or more in the 12 months before claiming), and have received an income support payment for at least nine months and are on Newstart Allowance when you claim, or have received a payment of a social security pension from Centrelink or a Veterans' Affairs Service Pension, or a Widow, Partner, Sickness or Parenting payment at any time within the 13 weeks immediately before claiming, or have previously received Mature Age Allowance, and meet residence requirements.

Partner Allowance (no new grants from 20 September 2003) - for people with no recent work experience whose partner gets a payment.

 

You stay qualified for Partner Allowance if you were born on or before 1 July 1955 are the partner of a person aged at least 21 who is getting Newstart Allowance, Special Benefit, Rehabilitation Allowance, Age Pension, Disability Support Pension, Mature Age Allowance, a Veterans' Affairs Service Pension, ABSTUDY or an Austudy do not qualify for Parenting Payment, (that is, you have no dependent children you can claim Parenting Payment for) are not engaged in industrial action are not serving a Newstart Allowance, Youth Allowance or Austudy waiting period are not serving a penalty non-payment period have no recent workforce experience (employment of at least 20 hours per week for a total of 13 weeks or more in the previous 12 months)

 

lWife Pension (no new grants from 1 July 1995) - for the female partner of a Disability Support Pensioner or Age Pensioner.

 

Wife Pension is gradually being phased out. New grants of Wife Pension stopped on 1 July 1995, however if you were receiving Wife Pension before that date, you can continue to receive the payment until you are transferred to Age Pension. Wife Pension is not activity tested so you do not have to look for work or do training. You can, however, get help to find work through Jobs, Education and Training. For more information, go to Factors that Affect Payments and Eligibility.

Widow 'B' Pension (no new grants from 20 March 1997) - for older widows without the financial support of their partner.

You may qualify for payment under the Pension Loans Scheme if you are a male aged 65 years or over, or a female at the current Age Pension age or over (or the partner of someone who is), and you and your partner are receiving or could receive some pension under the income or assets tests, and you own real estate assets in Australia, that can be offered as security for the loan.Only real estate owned in Australia can be used as security for the loan. Your home, if you own it, would normally be considered adequate security for the loan. Pension Loans Scheme - for people of Age Pension age whose capital is tied up in assets.

You may qualify for payment under the Pension Loans Scheme if you are a male aged 65 years or over, or a female at the current Age Pension age or over (or the partner of someone who is), and you and your partner are receiving or could receive some pension under the income or assets tests, and you own real estate assets in Australia, that can be offered as security for the loan.Only real estate owned in Australia can be used as security for the loan. Your home, if you own it, would normally be considered adequate security for the loan.

You could be paid a bonus if you continue to work past the date you meet age and residence requirements for Age Pension, and have registered as a member of the Scheme, and meet a flexible work test with a minimum of 960 hours for at least one year after your registration. You cannot be paid a bonus if you have previously received Age Pension or other income support (excluding Carer Payment) since reaching Age Pension age, or have already received a bonus, or use an International Social Security Agreement to meet the residence requirements when you finally claim your bonus and Age Pension. Register as soon as you can. For most people this will be as soon as they reach Age Pension age. If you have a partner, you must register individually. When you claim and get Age Pension or a Veterans' Affairs service pension, the bonus must be claimed at the same time.Note: You cannot accrue the bonus after you reach 75 years of age.

 

  • Pension Bonus Bereavement Payment - for the surviving partner of a deceased Pension Bonus Scheme member who did not make their claim for Age Pension and Pension Bonus before they died.

     

You may get Pension Bonus Bereavement Payment (PBBP) if your deceased partner was male and aged 65 years and over, or was female and above certain qualifying ages (see the chart below) did not claim a Pension Bonus before they died and you and your deceased partner met certain residence requirements, and had income and assets below a certain amount.

 

You qualify for Seniors Concession Allowance if you have a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card (To qualify, you must be an Australian resident, living in Australia, and not subject to a newly arrived residents waiting period, and have reached age pension age but do not qualify for Age Pension (or do not receive certain other Social Security/Veteran Affairs pensions/benefits), and have an annual adjusted taxable income* of less than $50 000 (singles) $80 000 (couples combined), or $100 000 (couples combined who are separated due to ill health). The limit is increased by $639.60 for each dependent child you care for., and meet residence requirements.

 

  • Utilities Allowance - assistance for you in meeting the costs of regular bills such as gas, electricity and water.

     

Utilities Allowance (UA) comprises two instalments per year and is paid to all age pension age customers on a qualifying income support payment customers under age pension age and in receipt of Mature Age Allowance (MAA), Partner Allowance (PA) or Widow Allowance (WA).Qualification is determined on 20 March and 20 September each year and payable every March and September thereafter. UA was first paid in March 2005 to age pension age customers and extended in September 2006 to customers in receipt of MAA, PA and WA.You must also meet certain residence requirements, and not have already received two instalments of Utilities Allowance or Seniors Concession Allowance during the financial year. Payments while you are ill, injured or have a disability:

 

You may get Disability Support Pension if you have an illness, injury or disability and you are aged 16 or over and under Age Pension age, and assessed as not being able to work or be retrained for work of at least 15 hours per week within two years because of your illness, injury or disability, or permanently blind, or participating in the Supported Wage System (SWS). Please Note: In most cases you must have lived in Australia for a total of 10 years as an Australian resident, or your disability occurred while you were an Australian resident. You will need to provide a report from your doctor on your impairment and work capacity. You may also be required to attend a Job Capacity Assessment with a Job Capacity Assessor.

Your illness, injury or disability must also attract an impairment rating of at least 20 points on the impairment tables. These impairment tables, contained in the Social Security Law, rate a person's impairment according to the severity of medical conditions and how they affect their ability to work. Impairment tables are completed by Job Capacity Assessors using information provided in medical reports and details provided by customers.

Your and your partner's (if you have one) income and assets must be below certain amounts. You are exempt from the income and assets test if you are permanently blind, however, your partner must meet the income and assets test to qualify for a partnered-rate pension. Your payment may also be affected if you get Workers' Compensation or Third Party damages.

 

  • Sickness Allowance - for people temporarily unable to work due to illness, injury or disability.

     

You may get Sickness Allowance if you are assessed as being unable to work or study temporarily because of illness, injury or disability and you are aged 21 or over but under Age Pension age and have a job, or aged 21 or over but under Age Pension age and getting ABSTUDY, or aged 25 and over but under Age Pension age and getting Austudy, and an Australian resident, in Australia and not subject to the two year newly arrived residents waiting period. You must have work or study to return to when you are better. A person claiming Sickness Allowance may be required to attend a Job Capacity Assessment and verify that they still have a job or study to return to. If a customer does not qualify for Sickness Allowance because they do not have a job or study to return to, but have a disability, illness or injury that temporarily stops them from working or studying, they may qualify for Newstart Allowance. A person claiming Sickness Allowance must be an Australian resident.

 

  • Newstart Allowance - for unemployed people aged over 21 OR people who are temporarily unable to work due to illness, injury or disability.

     

You may get Newstart Allowance if you are aged 21 or over and under Age Pension age are unemployed are prepared to enter into a Activity Agreement are an Australian resident, in Australia and not subject to the two year newly arrived residents waiting period are not involved in industrial action satisfy the income and assets test, and satisfy the Activity Test.

 

In special circumstances (such as if you are ill or injured or have a personal crisis) you may be able to get a short term exemption from the Activity Test. If you get Newstart Allowance and you are aged 50 or older, there are more flexible Activity Test requirements.   Youth Allowance - for full-time students aged 16 to 24 OR unemployed people aged under 21.

You may get Youth Allowance if you are aged 16-24 and studying or undertaking a Australian Apprenticeship full time (or aged 15 if considered independent), or aged 16-20 and looking for work full time (or aged 15 if considered independent), undertaking a combination of approved activities like Work for the Dole or  volunteering, or have a temporary exemption from the Activity Test (for example, due to illness), or aged 25 and over and studying or undertaking a Australian Apprenticeship full time, if you were getting Youth Allowance immediately before turning 25 and are still doing the same course or Australian Apprenticeship. (Other full time students aged 25 and over can apply for Austudy), and meet residence requirements.

If you are under 18, and have not completed Year 12, you are usually required to be in full time education, undertaking a Australian Apprenticeship or training to qualify for Youth Allowance, although some exemptions apply.

If you are not studying or undertaking a full time traineeship and you are getting Youth Allowance, you must show Centrelink you are actively looking for work by meeting the Activity Test. If you have a disability and are studying, you may not need to study full time to be eligible for Youth Allowance or you may be able to get Disability Support Pension instead. However if you have a short term illness or injury which prevents you from studying full time you still may be able to get Youth Allowance for the period of the illness or injury.

Please Note: Masters and Doctorate level studies are not approved courses for Youth Allowance.You may be eligible for Newstart Allowance if you are over 21 and unemployed or Austudy if you are over 25 and starting studies.You should telephone Centrelink or visit your nearest Centrelink Customer Service Centre to discuss what options are best for you.

 

  • Mobility Allowance - for people with disabilities to help them travel to work, training or job search activities.

     

You may receive Mobility Allowance if you:are aged 16 or over, and have a disability that prevents you from using public transport without substantial assistance (there does not need to be public transport in your area for you to qualify), and need to travel to and from your home as part of your work, self employment, training or job seeking. To qualify for the standard rate of Mobility Allowance, you must also be doing at least 32 hours over a 4 week period of voluntary work, paid work, self employment, training (including life skills courses) or any combination of these, or receiving Newstart, Austudy or Youth Allowance and be fulfilling the activity test associated with these payments, or participating in a Vocational Rehabilitation Services Programme, or looking for work under an agreement with a Provider of Australian Government Employment Services e.g. Job Network, Disability Employment Network, Vocational Rehabilitation Services, Job Placement Employment and Training or Personal Support Programme.

To qualify for the higher rate of Mobility Allowance, you must also be receiving Newstart Allowance, Youth Allowance, Parenting Payment or Disability Support Pension, and working 15 hours or more per week for wages at or above the relevant minimum wage, or looking for work under an agreement with a Provider of Australian Government Employment Services e.g. Job Network, Disability Employment Network, Vocational Rehabilitation Services, Job Placement Employment and Training or Personal Support Programme, or working for at least 15 hours per week under the Supported Wage System.In some instances the higher rate may still be payable if you stop receiving Newstart Allowance, Youth Allowance, Parenting Payment or Disability Support Pension because of income you have earned.

Please Note: You can still get this payment (as long as you meet all other qualifications) if you received a GST exemption on a car. You cannot get this payment if you currently have a motor vehicle provided by the Department of Veteran's Affairs under the Vehicle Assistance Scheme.After a person finishes employment or training, if they continue to satisfy other conditions, the allowance is payable for 12 weeks before cancellation.

 

You may get Youth Disability Supplement if you are under 21 years, and receiving Disability Support Pension, or receiving Youth Allowance as a full time student, job seeker or Australian Apprentice, or receiving ABSTUDY as a full time student or Australian Apprentice. If you are receiving Youth Allowance or ABSTUDY you must have an illness, injury or disability which prevents you from working 30 or more hours per week and is expected to last for more than two years, and have your work capacity assessed by a Job Capacity Assessor.

Compare to Taiwan’s social welfare system, Australia’s system net is large and mature, but with the population who can enjoy the welfare are growing how to arrange that to the most needed people will become important in the future. Strategies reflect the current reality that there is a reasonable limit on the demand for  Australia government spending along with the challenges faced by factors such as the aging of the population.