Listening to the brave stories of 10 single mothers makes it clear that the legislative change that shifted single parents onto a reduced level of government support, known as Newstart, when their youngest child turned eight, has not had the intended effect. The vast majority of these women were already working when the change took place, and many were also undertaking further education to improve their future prospects. These sole parents are now stuck in a cycle of working in insecure, part-time, low paid roles struggling to cover the basics. Their education has been put on hold and everyday activities, like school excursions and sport, are out of reach. Their children’s future prospects are suffering and that affects us all.
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