Australians overwhelmingly back a liveable income above the poverty line. That is the key finding of a landmark new study from Anglicare Australia.
The Valuing Every Contribution study surveyed 1,000 Australians. It found that:
- Three in four people (77%) support all Australians having an above the poverty line
- Two in five (38%) would use a basic income to secure their finances
- One in four (22%) would spend more time volunteering
- One in four (22%) would spend time caring
- One in five (20%) would improve their skills and education
- One in ten (12%) would reduce their paid work hours.
Anglicare Australia Executive Director Kasy Chambers said it was time for Australia to introduce a basic income above the poverty line.
“Last year, many Australians had a form of basic income for the first time. JobSeeker was lifted to the poverty line, mutual obligations were removed, and JobKeeper gave stability to people in insecure work.
“Lives were transformed, and hundreds of thousands of people were lifted out of poverty. Our study shows that a permanent basic income would lock in these benefits and bring many more.
“There are so many Australians who want to work more, but can’t get the hours they need. A basic income could create space for them by allowing others to work less.
“People on insecure incomes told us it would help them get a handle on their debt and save for the future. Others wanted to prepare for a changing workforce by investing in their skills and education. A basic income would help make that happen.
“With so many benefits, it’s no wonder that so many people want their fellow Australians to have a liveable income. A staggering 77% of Australians want everyone to have an income above the poverty line.
“Australia has already made this happen once. Now it’s time to do it again – and lock it in for good.”
Anglicare Australia is the first major charity to support a basic income.