the National Disability Insurance Scheme is it?
I remember my mother, not "working" at the time, getting something called "Child Endowment". It was paid at the rate of five shillings a week for me as the first born. My mother then got ten shillings a week each for the three kittens who followed me. The scheme started in 1941 to help mothers whose partners had gone to war and continued in one form or another until 1976 when it was replaced by the Family Allowance.
The Family Allowance payment has been fiddled with ever since - mostly reducing the amount paid to parents. That's understandable. There are more two income households.
And then along came "Paid Parental Leave" - 18 weeks of paid leave providing that you have been working for 330 hours in the previous 13 months. That works out at around a day each week I think. Employers are required under certain conditions to help fund it. The government tops it up.
And, in certain circumstances, people can "double dip" - get more than other people. Very nice if you can do it. It's expensive to have a child. The money comes from both the employer and the government.
The government wants to stop the "double dipping" and has offered to increase the amount of time on leave to 20 weeks in return for a stop to double dipping. Fair? Apparently not.
The government has tried to ram the changes through three times now - and failed. This time they are tying the changes to a raft of other measures. They are including the National Disability Insurance Scheme. They are saying "pass the changes to the PPL scheme in order to get the money for the NDIS". The Opposition and a minor party are saying "no, find the money for the NDIS somewhere else". Yes, easy to find another $3bn for a scheme some Australians believe will never be of any interest or benefit to them. I heard about this late yesterday afternoon. I was at a meeting. Someone came in towards the end of it and said to me, "Well, that's it. N... won't support it. You can kiss the NDIS goodbye and a good thing too. It was going to cost far too much. It's not like the disabled contribute that much."
There was silence. I picked up my things. I walked out. I am still waiting to hear something.
And I am wondering how many other people, for all they say, actually think like that?