Justice, Opportunity and Shared Wealth for all South Australians

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Read our latest media releases, catch up on anything you missed from the our radio program Small Change, and comment on issues and ideas in our blog. 

High costs and massive energy debts: AER Report paints gloomy picture of SA’s energy costs

13 December 2018

SACOSS has greeted today’s performance report from the Australian Energy Regulator with enormous disappointment, noting that low income households were likely to be experiencing even greater hardship.

SACOSS CEO Ross Womersley said, “This report again confirms that SA has the country’s highest priced standard offers and thus the least affordable energy in the National Electricity Market (NEM), with 11.2% of a low income household’s disposable income being spent on electricity.

SACOSS welcomes SA Parliament Committee support for unemployed

6 December 2018

The South Australian Council of Social Service has welcomed the release of the interim report of the Parliament Select Committee on Poverty in South Australia. The Committee made six recommendations to alleviate poverty in South Australia, with the first being a call on the Federal Government to make a meaningful increase to the rate of the Newstart Allowance (and other base allowances) as a matter of urgency.

Survey shows South Australians in poverty are dreading Christmas

30 November 2018

ACOSS and SACOSS will outline the results of an online survey of Newstart and Youth Allowance respondents, which has found:
• 90% of South Australian respondents were not looking forward to the holiday season due to the cost
• 81% of SA respondents felt their low income would prevent them from being able to spend time with family and friends over the holiday period.

Petrol price volatility hits the poor hardest

22 November 2018

Hand-wringing over the high cost of petrol does little to help those hardest hit by price volatility – but there are things governments can do to reduce cost-of-living pressures.

Petrol cost and volatility hitting poor and regional consumers hardest: Instead of handwringing on prices, Gov needs to act on affordability

22 November 2018

SACOSS is today releasing our latest cost of living report highlighting the impact of high petrol prices and their volatility, particularly on lower income and regional consumers. 

SACOSS CEO Ross Womersley says, “Over the last two years fuel prices in Adelaide have risen 30% (as per the latest figures from the end of the September quarter), and the average South Australian household now spends around $50 a week on petrol.”

“We’ve seen fuel prices go up and down...

20,000 more households to get help with energy: SACOSS applauds government’s decision to extend audit scheme

24 October 2018

SACOSS has welcomed the State Government’s announcement today to expand the Retailer Energy Efficiency Scheme, which should see approximately 20,000 extra households eligible for free home energy audits. 

“Before the election SACOSS had called for an expansion of the REES to help 'the working poor’ so we applaud this decision,” says Jo De Silva, SACOSS Senior Policy Adviser in Energy.

The need to be online is blowing a hole in budgets of the poor: Better infrastructure and income support needed

15 October 2018

This week is both Anti-Poverty Week and Get Online Week in Australia, so it’s a good time to ask how anyone can get by spending just $12 a week on telecommunications. 

There’s no doubt telecommunications are essential in an age where government services, businesses, employment and education are all online, and much of our contact with friends and family rely on social media and digital communications. Recent SACOSS research shows that the average SA household spends $46 on telecommunications each week, equivalent to 3.2% of their disposable income. That was more...

Huge SA income boost of $288M if Newstart raised, says Deloitte

17 September 2018

Report shows raising Newstart & Youth Allowance will boost jobs, state taxes

South Australia’s total disposable income would increase by $288 million if the Federal Government raised Newstart, Youth Allowance and related payments by $75 per week.  This is according to a report by Deloitte Access Economics, released today by The Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS), with support from SACOSS and the state and and territory councils of social service.

 

Budget delivers on election promises but risks our long-term future

4 September 2018
The Marshall Government's first State Budget contains swings and roundabouts, says the SA Council of Social Service.
 
"We appreciate that the Budget provides funding for election promises, including modest increases to some important programs for disadvantaged South Australians, " says SACOSS CEO Ross Womersley, "but at the same time we are concerned about cuts to a number of services."
 

Poverty figures paint a poor picture

24 August 2018

Mahatma Gandhi famously said that a society can be measured by how it treats its most vulnerable.
While it follows from this maxim that lifting people out of poverty should be a priority, the reality is that governments rarely shine a light on this issue. 

The issues are complex, and political life cycles often result in short term policy settings and programs which don’t give real and lasting solutions. 
So we applaud the SA Parliament which is currently examining the extent of poverty in South Australia.