Beyond the Headlines: Budget 2024
14 May 2024

The Federal Government has just handed down the Budget.

Below are some of they key announcements for ASU members. All members are also invited to attend a special Budget Briefing at 11am on Tuesday 21 May with Deputy Secretary Jan Primrose who has been in Canberra for the Budget Lock Up tonight.

RSVP: Budget Briefing


Here's what we know.

Significant increases to homelessness funding

Thanks to ongoing campaigning by ASU members, the Federal Government has significantly increased funding for frontline homelessness services (and the workers that support these critical services). This includes a new $9.3 billion 5-year national housing and homelessness services agreement, (and $400 million each year to cover Equal Pay for ASU members) and $1 billion directed towards crisis and transitional accommodation for women and children leaving domestic violence.

Paid social work placements

Thanks to the incredible campaigning of ASU members, social work students (and nursing and teaching students) will be able to access a practical placement payment of $319.50 per week from July 2025.

Disability advocacy funding doubled

Social Services Minister Amanda Rishworth has announced that disability advocacy organisations will receive $10.6 million over two years: a doubling of current funding.

Disability advocates are critical to ensuring the NDIS is the best it can be. Fair funding is critical for choice and control.

Family and Domestic Violence

The Leaving Violence Program will be made permanent with $925 million funding, providing payments for people leaving violence.

The Government will also provide $6 million over two years for the provision of trauma-informed local outreach, healthcare in crisis and temporary accommodation and services, to support women and children experiencing family, domestic and sexual violence.

However, this announcement in the absence of increased funding for existing specialist domestic and family violence services does not go nearly far enough.

Community Legal Centres: Interim Funding

There is an additional $9.6 million funding - but this simply isn't enough considering the crisis facing our community legal sector.
The Government has said this is an interim measure, but it is totally inadequate. We will be calling for urgent funding measures over the next 12 months as part of the National Legal Assistance Partnership.

The Government will provide additional funding of $44.1 million to support the National Legal Assistance Partnership and Family Violence Prevention Legal Services, including one-year indexation supplementation to Community Legal Centres and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services.

Failure to lift JobSeeker

While there is a small, additional 10% increase in Commonwealth Rent Assistance there is no significant changes to JobSeeker. This keeps people trapped in poverty.

In the midst of the worst cost-of-living crisis in decades, with inflation around 6% in some capital cities, this Labor Government has ignored research and growing community support for a significant increase in JobSeeker.

The ASU continues to call on the Government to increase income support payments to at least $80 a day.

Sign the petition here 

Paid Parental Leave on Superannuation

Announced earlier this year, but confirmed in tonight's budget, this is a landmark victory by ASU members in the fight for secure retirement for all.

Parents with a baby born or adopted on, or after, 1 July 2025 will receive 12% of the Parental Leave Payment as a superannuation equivalent payment to their super fund.
Learn more here.

Pay rises for Aged Care Workers and Early Childhood Educators

Union members have secured big - and long overdue -pay rises for aged care workers and early childhood educators, with substantial funding set aside in the Budget.

Cost of living bonus

The new tax-cut plan will provide cost-of-living relief for Australian workers.
For example, a worker on average annual earnings of $72,753 will get a $1,498 tax cut. That’s an extra $28 in their pocket each week.
You can calculate your cost-of-living bonus here.

$300 Energy Bill payment to every household

From 1 July, every household will get a $300 energy bill relief payment (at a cost of $3.5 billion). The rebate will be automatically applied to your energy bills after July 1.


Exclusive Budget Update for ASU Members

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Exclusive Budget Update for ASU Community and Disability Services Members

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