Justice, Opportunity and Shared Wealth for all South Australians

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Media Releases

State Budget Must Fund Concessions Reform

Tuesday, 21 February 2023

MEDIA RELEASE: The South Australian Council of Social Service today called on the state government to fund concession reform in the next state budget. Transport, health, utilities and cost of living concessions are the most direct way the state government provides financial support to low-income households, but the concessions system is fundamentally broken and people are missing out on the support they need to cover basic living costs.

Overhaul of energy concessions needed as three million households struggle to pay their energy bills

Wednesday, 21 December 2022

A report released today by social service organisations found that while around three million households receive some form of ongoing financial assistance for their energy bills, the poor design and implementation of the assistance means too many people still can’t afford the energy they need.

Calls for energy concession increases as inflation data shows big hikes in Adelaide electricity and gas prices

Wednesday, 26 October 2022

MEDIA RELEASE: The South Australian Council of Social Service today called on the state government to increase funding for energy concessions going to low-income households and to reform the system to ensure that we get maximum support for those who need it most.

State Government's digital skills announcement a welcome step - but more to do

Thursday, 3 February 2022

South Australian Council of Social Service (SACOSS) welcomes the state government’s announcement today of funding to provide support and equipment for students to develop their digital skills. In particular, we congratulate the government on committing $23 million to providing internet connectivity and devices to low-income families who might otherwise be locked out of access to digital technology. 

Govt urged to act as COVID-19 pushes community services to the brink

Friday, 20 March 2020
SACOSS is warning that the community services sector will be unable to support vulnerable South Australians through the COVID-19 crisis unless the Federal Government steps-up to provide an urgent rescue package.
Community services were already struggling to keep up with demand in aged care, homelessness and support for people escaping domestic violence, as well as providing disability, mental health, and drug and alcohol services, and will soon reach a crisis point due to COVID-19.

Regulator backs in Consumer Groups Concerns re SA Water business case

Wednesday, 4 March 2020

SACOSS welcomed today’s release of ESCOSA’s Draft Decision in relation to SA Water’s proposed plan for delivering water and sewerage services to customers from 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2024, noting that if implemented, it was almost certain to drive water prices down even further than had been projected in ‘Our Plan 2020’.

Ross Womersley, CEO of the SA Council of Social Service, said:

Insurance Costs Soaring – and that’s before the summer’s fires

Monday, 24 February 2020

The South Australian Council of Social Service’s latest Cost of Living Update, released today, highlights the importance of insurance costs in household budgets, points to a long term trend of insurance prices rising at well-above the general inflation rate and raises concerns about the implications of un/under-insurance for vulnerable households.

The report found that:

Political inaction on climate change is hurting our most vulnerable, worsening poverty and inequality

Thursday, 12 December 2019

In the midst of unprecedented bushfires and international climate talks in Madrid, the Councils of Social Service are calling for urgent government action on climate change to support those hardest hit by its impacts – people on low incomes or experiencing disadvantage. In a joint statement released today, the Councils of Social Service argue the climate crisis is not only a threat to our environment, it is a threat to people’s lives and livelihoods, and to ending poverty and inequality.

Dangerous and outrageous – Councils of Social Service condemn proposed funding cut to national voice for First Nations women on domestic violence

Tuesday, 10 December 2019

The Councils of Social Service across the country have joined together to urge the Morrison Government to reinstate funding to the National Family Violence Prevention and Legal Services Forum (NFVPLS) the national peak body for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander victims and survivors of domestic violence.

The National Family Violence Prevention and Legal Services Forum is vital to eradicating our country's shameful rates of domestic violence.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander survivors of domestic violence must be heard.

SACOSS applauds AER’s decision to act against EnergyAustralia

Thursday, 21 November 2019

The South Australian Council of Social Service (SACOSS) has today congratulated the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) for its compliance and enforcement action against EnergyAustralia, in relation to alleged breaches of important consumer protections contained in the National Energy Retail Law and Rules.

SACOSS is particularly encouraged to see the enforcement of retailers’ obligations to offer and apply payment plans to customers who are struggling to pay their bills.

SACOSS’ Working to Make Ends Meet report highlights energy affordability struggles for “waged poor” households

Wednesday, 20 November 2019

SACOSS today launched its report, Working to Make Ends Meet: Low-income Workers and Energy Bill Stress. The report investigates households whose main source of income is wages but who are still living below the “poverty line”. This report, based on national statistical data and South Australian case studies, is unique in that most other affordability research has focused on consumers generally, or those on income support like Newstart and other allowances.

Regulating a reduction in energy bills is good news

Tuesday, 8 October 2019

The South Australian Council of Social Service (SACOSS) has welcomed the draft decision of the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) on SA Power Networks' regulatory proposal for the 2020-25 regulatory control period, commencing 1 July 2020.

“This draft decision is an important step in the AER’s determination of the amount of revenue that SA Power Networks (SAPN) can recover from its customers over the next five years, and this flows on to the final cost to consumers,” said SACOSS CEO, Ross Womersley.

Statement on constitutional recognition of Australia’s first peoples

Friday, 12 July 2019

Formally acknowledging and reconciling the wrongs perpetrated against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people—and their long legacy of ongoing trauma—must be a national priority.

It’s crucial the Federal Government works genuinely with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and organisations to get the process and the wording right.

2019 Budget doesn’t quite pass the ‘Fairness Test’ for low income households

Tuesday, 18 June 2019

The South Australian Council of Social Services (SACOSS) reacted with a mix of concern and relief to today’s state budget. SACOSS was pleased the budget did not contain sweeping cuts to services which many in the sector feared, but there was a $360m reduction in departmental budgets as well as some specific funding cuts announced. These cuts will inevitably see services diminished in some areas.

SACOSS welcomes SA Parliament Committee support for unemployed

Thursday, 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.