Saturday, 19 October 2013

On 18 October 2013 as bushfires raged up and down the NSW east coast, the Abbott Government performed this act of bastardry


The Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment (the AGDRP) provides an immediate, one-off payment to Australians adversely affected by a major disaster. [ComLaw October 2013]

Those who have lived through natural disasters before will note that the Abbott Government is no longer paying relief if the October 2013 bushfires in New South Wales have forced an individual or family out of their house for 24 hours or more, or if access to return home has been cut off or if they are stranded at home and unable to leave.

The Schedule 2 clause covering these circumstances in a bushfire major disaster formerly allowed payments if:

(iv)  the person is unable to gain access to his or her principal place of residence for at least 24 hours because:
(A)  access to the place of residence is cut off  or
(B)  the person is unable to leave a place affected by the disaster;
(v)  the person is stranded in his or her principal place of residence for at least 24 hours, or
(b)  as a result of the disaster, the person’s principal place of residence was without a particular utility service for a continuous period of 48 hours;


I, Michael Keenan, Minister for Justice, make this determination under subsection 106lL (2) of the Social Security Act 1991.
Dated   18th October 2013
Michael Keenan
Minister for Justice

1              Name of determination
        This determination is the Social Security (Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment) Determination 2013 (No. 5).

2              Commencement
                This determination commences on the day after it is registered.

3              Definitions
         (1)   In this determination:
Act means the Social Security Act 1991.
destroyed, for a place of residence, includes a residence damaged to the extent that it must be demolished.
immediate family member, of a person, means:
                (a)    the person’s partner; or
                (b)    the person’s natural child, adoptive child or stepchild; or
                (c)    the person’s natural parent, adoptive parent or step-parent; or
                (d)    the person’s legal guardian; or
                (e)    the person’s brother, sister, stepbrother or stepsister.
Note   This term is used in a different sense to that used in the Act.
major damage, for a residence, means:
                (a)    damage to at least a quarter of the interior of the residence; or
                (b)    that the residence is structurally unsound; or 
             (c)    damage to the residence that exposes at least a quarter of the interior of the residence to the elements; or
               (d)    sewage contamination of the interior of the residence, or of the water supply to the residence.
seriously injured, for a person, means:
                (a)    the person has sustained an injury; and
                (b)    because of the injury:
                          (i)    the person was admitted to hospital; or
                         (ii)    under normal circumstances, the person would have been admitted to hospital.

  4            Person adversely affected by a major disaster

              For subsection 1061L (2) of the Act, a person is adversely affected by a major disaster mentioned in Schedule 1 if the person is affected in a way mentioned in Schedule 2.
Note   Subsection 36 (1) of the Social Security Act 1991 allows the Minister to determine, in writing, that an event is a major disaster if the event is a disaster that has such a significant impact on individuals that a government response is required.


Schedule 1  Major disaster

Only the bushfires in New South Wales which commenced on 9 October 2013 and continued in October 2013 which as at 18 October 2013 covered the affected Local Government Areas of Blue Mountains, Lithgow, Muswellbrook, Port-Macquarie Hastings, Port Stevens, Wyong, Wingecarribee.

                Schedule 2  Circumstances in which person adversely affected

A person is adversely affected by a major disaster mentioned in Schedule 1 if:
 (a)    as a direct result of the disaster:
          (i)  the person is seriously injured; or
          (ii)  the person is an immediate family member of an Australian who is killed; or
          (iii)  the person’s principal place of residence has been destroyed
or has sustained major damage; or
 (b)    the person is the principal carer of a child to whom paragraph (a) applies.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

By the looks of it that means if you can't get to work for days because the bushfires have gone through your street but missed burning your house to the ground, then there's no help with lost wages and too bad if you still have to feed the kids.
Feckin Abbott!

cantbeeffed said...

Ultimately, this is just a left-wing critique of the right. This move is consistent with right-wing ideology of individual responsibility, their response would be that it's up to individuals to have money set aside for a rainy day, or a fiery day as the case may be. Rather than whining about specific instances of withdrawal of tax payer support, we should be having a broader discussion about what things people should be responsible for and those that tax payers should bear. In this example, maybe some information on whether this payment was means tested to be available only to the poor?

Nay Roskell said...

So the people of Catherine Hill Bay, Cams Wharf, Nords Wharf and I think Gwandalan miss out completely as they are in Lake Macquarie local government area...

clarencegirl said...

Lake Macquarie LGA covered in 16 October announcement; http://www.disasterassist.gov.au/Currentdisasters/Pages/NSW/NSW---Eastern-NSW-Bushfires---from-16-October-2013.aspx

Anonymous said...

Hands up ... Who voted them in??? Thanks for nothing!!

Anonymous said...

Perhaps they could claim that they had to attend a wedding to network, or cycle in a community event, and claim their expenses that way. seems to work for those in govt

Adam Brindley said...

People are out there suffering loosing and are in pain over this .. how can a government go .. oh hell this is going to cost us ... change the laws now .. 18-10-2013 in the midst of the disaster they cut funding .. regardless of your political standing, that is just a bastard act.

Anonymous said...

And the people voted him in? Seriously he is a joke! !!!!

aussieringer said...

I'm an Australian who lives in the U.S. As far as being a leftist critique of the right I agree wholeheartedly . The left here from the president down have the same mentality . They throw money at anything that they believe will create votes for their party . Here in the U.S. votes are bought by handouts to the people who would rather live on government hand outs than actually having a job . A perfect example is that you can even get a cellphone from the government simply by filling out a form . this at the taxpayers cost .Tony Abbott has just taken over the reins and will continue to be under fire by the left no matter what he does . I sympathize with the Australian people but having lived here for 23years and seen how the leftists have driven the country into the ground the only thing I can say is that you have to keep fighting .

bibra said...

aussieringer, You are welcome to stay in the usa, and enjoy all the ""benefits"" that dying empire has to offer as it is run into the ground by its war mongering greed. I for one will live in Australia knowing that even with the misfortune of having the bastard Tony running the place for a couple of years, we are still living in Gods Own Country, not afraid to walk the streets for fear of being shot, with our medicare and a safety net in case we fall on hard times.

AndyT said...

aussieringer...please stay in america, we don't want you back. i hope you enjoy fending for yourself when the american economy collapses and that you have saved for this inevitable event... :)

Anonymous said...

But it's OK for ministers to spend thousands going to weddings and sporting events, fly to Darwin to review a property investment opportunity and claim expenses for same on taxpayers? That's OK but helping desperate families is not? Don't like this NEW true blue mate attitude one bit!