Skip to content
Education Training

An increase in the Youth Allowance is an increase in educational equity

UNSW Sydney 2 mins read

UNSW calls on the Federal Government to act on the recommendation in its Economic Inclusion Advisory Committee’s report and substantially increase Youth Allowance in the budget.

Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Attila Brungs said, “raising the rate of Youth Allowance would greatly assist low SES students studying higher education. This, along with changes to HECs indexation and paid placements for education, nursing and social work students are important equity reforms that should be prioritised in the Budget.”

The Federal Government has said the way to meet the rapid growth in jobs requiring university qualifications in the coming decades is to enrol more young people from outer suburbs and the regions in the tertiary system, and to ensure they succeed.

“The Economic Inclusion Advisory Committee’s report shows these people are being left behind, and the social and economic cost of inaction will only grow the longer the government waits,” said Professor Brungs.

Recent UNSW research undertaken as part of a long-term collaboration with ACOSS found among people in households below the poverty line, poverty was deepest for those reliant on Youth Allowance.

“When students are among the poorest members of our society the odds are stacked against their success,” said Professor Brungs.

As part of UNSW’s strategic priority of advancing societal impact, the university has committed to an access rate of 25% by 2027 for commencing domestic students from underrepresented schools and low-socioeconomic status (SES) backgrounds. However, we know access without continued support, including financial support, is a risk to success at university.

UNSW supports the recommendations within the Universities Accord to increase access to underrepresented and disadvantaged students.

“Raising Youth Allowance and other working age payments a rare issue that unites the business community, social service advocacy groups, and economists. They all recognise that the current rate is incompatible with a basic standard of living, let alone any notion of equality of opportunity” said Professor Verity Firth, Vice President of Societal Impact, Equity and Engagement.

UNSW urges the government to act on the Economic Inclusion Advisory Committee’s advice and substantially increase Youth Allowance so students can be better supported to undertake tertiary study. The Committee found lifting JobSeeker and related payments to 90% of the pension rate ($72 per day) would improve their adequacy and help people afford the essentials.


Contact details:

Prof. Verity Firth is available for comment  

Contact Michaela Boland 0402 834 831


More from this category

  • Education Training
  • 23/05/2024
  • 09:19
Dubai Future Foundation

Dubai Awards Three Winners from India and Austria at First of Its Kind ‘Global Prompt Engineering Championship’

Dubai Crown Prince announces to train one million people how to AI prompt at the final day of the world’s biggest AI prompt engineering…

  • Contains:
  • Education Training, Political
  • 23/05/2024
  • 08:01
Parliament of Australia

Why isn’t civics education working?: Electoral matters committee begins hearings

TheJoint Standing Committee on Electoral Matterswill hold the first public hearing for itsinquiry into civics education, engagement, and participation in AustraliaonThursday 23 May 2024. Committee Chair,Ms Kate Thwaites MP,said ‘it’s concerning that many young Australians don’t have the grounding in civics to set them up to be confident participants in our democracy. ‘Data from the National Assessment Program – Civics and Citizenship shows that in 2019 just 38 per cent of Year 10 students and 53 per cent of Year 6 students achieved the ‘proficient’ standard. 'As we begin our inquiry, the Committee will be investigating how civics forms part…

  • Education Training, Indigenous
  • 22/05/2024
  • 16:49
La Trobe University

New La Trobe Indigenous research centre launches

Media Release Embargoed to 6pm, Wednesday, May 22 La Trobe University today launched an Indigenous Research Centre to create and flourish Indigenous community research and provide a safe space for First Nations researchers. The centre is known by the Indigenous name Gabra Biik, Wurruwila Wutja* – meaning Clever Country, Clever People – with words taken from four Indigenous languages. Part of the University’s Indigenous Strategy launched in October 2023, it is a virtual and practice-based research centre that focusses on projects that promote cultural exchange and learning, fostering mutual respect and understanding. Pro Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous) Associate Professor Michael Donovan said…

Media Outreach made fast, easy, simple.

Feature your press release on Medianet's News Hub every time you distribute with Medianet. Pay per release or save with a subscription.