What is really going on in your head? – The Budget.

Screen Shot 2014-09-01 at 10.16.14 am

It was bought to my attention recently that I have built this social media platform, so I am able to voice an opinion.

This is true.

But there are THOUSANDS of women, just like me, who have something to say. Working mums, single mums, trophy wives, Stay at Home Mums and Grandmas. And a bloke or two.

So I am delighted to be able provide a platform for YOUR voice. For YOUR opinions.

On occasion, I am going to ask an open question (over of Facebook – Join the conversation HERE) , and you have carte blanch to voice your opinion. Topics will vary from the sublime to the ridiculous, and I am open to get input here.

We do a lot of listening, but it is time that we start the conversation. What is really going on in your head?

HOW WILL THE NEW BUDGET REALLY AFFECT YOU AND YOUR FAMILY?

Kelly – Newcastle

I receive DSP. I’m on this payment due to my mental health stuff. Now, I would 100% prefer to be able to work – I spent 5 years at uni, but after my head fell apart like a chocolate orange, work just hasn’t been an option for me. It results in anxiety that tempts me towards suicide, fear that results in sleeplessness, depression that tells me I’m useless I’m nothing I’m better off dead.

I’ve continued to engage therapy for my issues, and I work damn hard to live life every single day. It’s a purposeful choice and one that I have had to learn all kinds of skills to make work.

If I was under 35, however, I’d be forced to participate in work for the dole (or similar) activities if I was assessed as being able to.

This is my issue – it takes a huge amount of rigmarole to actually get onto DSP, which I’m all in favour of – if you need to be on it then it is easy to get the evidence required.

But under these budget changes, if I was assessed as being able to participate in these programs, I would have to. However, the assessments that Centrelink have to use are different to the assessments that my team use – as they are in case of many people with mental health issues, and just about every other disability I can think of.

The budget shifts mean that now, the funding behind DSP can decide if I “really need” to be on it. The thing is, no one would choose to be on it.

Isabelle – Boyanup WA

My biggest concern with the budget and the faffing around with various payments and allowances is the provision of childcare and the subsidies for. Currently it costs us $115 a day for childcare and that is AFTER any government rebates have been applied. Which considering I am currently working as a nurse for $35 an hour before tax makes essentially my income redundant in contributing anything to our house or lifestyle. It does however keep me sane and I am currently working towards a nurse practitioner in ophthalmology.

I don’t have any other options in regards to childcare, I suppose I could be SAHM but that doesn’t work for me and then by extension my family. I should not have to stay home simply because childcare options are so limited and so figgin expensive. There is no centre based care here so I am needing to utilise in home care which thankfully is available and is a true blessing.

I get angry at the need to feel that I should justify why I am working. It shouldn’t be an issue and yet it is. If families wish to have both parents working then they should be supported in that decision and if one parent stays home then again that family should have the support available to make that happen. Single parent families should be given heaps more support. This whole newstart non payment under thirty 6 month crap is completely unnecessary.

Sharon

I’m a secondary school teacher – part time. My husband at 40 decided this year to start a carpenter’s apprenticeship. So we’re a little shorter on cash this year but we’re doing ok. 2 kidlets that we love.

But the Govt cut the tools scheme. You used to get instalments to buy tools as an apprentice – around $3000 over three years. So we’ve had to factor that in to our budget.

The tools are needed and necessary. I would imagine that a young 18 year old apprentice is going to feel the pinch more than us but….we’d factored that benefit into our calculations when hubby decided to go back to school.

Wendy

Uni fees – sooooo angry! I went through in good old days of no HECS. Ok I can accept fees but deregulation is, as a surprise to no-one, leading to class-based education.

Money should NEVER be a deciding factor in education. I wish students would go on strike and see how their value changes when it becomes clear we’re going to run short of teachers, nurses, doctors, engineers, social workers. It boils my piss to have my children labelled bludgers by the MINISTER for EDUCATION no less – my kids, who have achieved great marks at school, worked part time through school and full time in “gap year” ( eg save for uni year). Meanwhile, false claims about their potential earnings used as justification for high HECS debt (but it’s ok for current high income earners to escape the worst of the budget because they contribute through more tax….whaaaat?). Add to this the disgusting scholarships for daddy’s little girl – I could vomit. I can only assume this government wants a society of cheap workers for Gina because they sure as hell don’t want thinkers, academics, graduates.

And we can afford to send out kids to uni. Many can’t. Shame.

Jane – Killara

I am a keener sort of “leaner”. Lean from lifting Gina, that is.

Failure to tax big companies means more tax on us ordinary folk and fewer common resources.

Unbridled banking and financial service fees can also hit us daily, thanks and all.

As parent of children with a degree of autism, dyslexia etc I seek good disability resources in their public education (cut). Lovely Christian Private schools don’t want them, either. School Counsellors being replaced by chaplains means that if the children need professionals trained in psychology and counselling with a tip top professional working with children standard, that must now be paid for privately, too.

Katrina – QLD

Honestly, it doesn’t really affect us at all. We have a combined income of near $150k and our three kids are in primary school. We pretty much don’t get any welfare benefits anyway, and we are happy fit and healthy. I don’t mean for this to sound like we’re rolling in it – it certainly never feels that way, but we are comfortable enough to make choices, not have decisions foisted upon us, in the way that we live our lives.

We both work in universities and even the changes mooted for fee structures are likely to increase demand for our service areas and funding to our service areas.

But the lack of personal effect doesn’t mean that I agree with the budget at all. It is penalizing needy people and demonising the poor. It makes me angry AND sad. There is no budget crisis, just an excuse to peddle a budget that takes this government further down the path of rewarding and perpetuating privilege.

Jane – Adelaide.

My child naturally loves healthy food. You know, the broccoli that is sometimes 8 dollars a kg. Or the apples sitting at 5 dollars a kilo. I have to keep her food roughly the same every week….her blood has to stay thin. I pay what I must for my childs health. So along with the scripts and constant trips to the hospital and being a single parent, my own current budget means zero anything for that child who has had 3 open heart bypass surgeries.

No out of school activities. …she would love to learn to swim, can’t do that but I can drive to the hospital a couple of times every week. Already I avoid eating dinner sometimes so my 2 kids can have the same healthy food.

Sharon – Prairie QLD

I live in NW Qld Rural Australia so my opinion on the budget is going to be vastly different to other suburban housewives. But I am still a wife and mother and have a home and have to raise a family.

When it comes to the fresh produce, the farm gate price for everything is at an all time low…. where does the big difference go? Certainly not in our pocket, instead its coming OUT of our pockets. This is where pretty much our most important dollars go, and this should be a focus for govt and everyone. If we don’t have good quality AUSTRALIAN FOOD, we will be buggered.

As for taxation, I note that we get around $6 less in our pay each week. Equivalent to a good coffee and cake? (that I don’t have anyhow, as I don’t live in town and have coffee out every morning or Friday morning or whatever). If it helps get our govt financially sound again and then able to be a little more free in its budget, then I’m all for it.

Mia – Brunswick West.

My parents who have worked damn hard but through stupid misfortune and the GFC swallowing half their super are left to live on the pension, they can barely survive, so I’ll be kicking in some cash when they really need it – they won’t accept much help but I can pre-pay bills etc. without too many arguments. I guess that will impact us then.

A friend who has a disabled child who gets barely any financial assistance and has costs of more than $10k per year in therapy and equipment.

Then there is the child care industry that I am heavily reliant on – I could not work without daycare, then we would be financially stuffed. The industry have had funds which were promised to them stripped away. I guess this will impact my son’s care.

Lisa – Kantanning

The new budget will not affect our family one bit ( I did the online survey and everything), apart from the $6 co-payment, which we can afford. We are lucky though, in a higher earning bracket, despite being on a basically single income.

It really gives me the irrits when people complain about the budget/new law/new legislation if they are then not prepared to get off their backside and put their money where their mouth is by actively campaigning for change. Get petitions going, picket your local representative, do SOMETHING besides gripe on facey.

Chelsea – Orange

It won’t. We’re from Orange in Central West NSW. It’s my parents (transitioning to retirement), my brother (27, own home) and myself (26, saving for own home). We do not receive any government cash benefits, and luckily do not have any serious health concerns. We are middle class Aussies, and in a financially good situation.

However, there are things lacking (not cut, as they weren’t in budgets from previous governments either) like better healthcare for the bush which we have been campaigning for, for years. That does effect us. We have to travel to see specialists or wait months and sometimes years. This, I wish we would see more of.

And now it is over to you.

HOW WILL THE NEW BUDGET REALLY AFFECT YOU AND YOUR FAMILY?

Normal mundane tales to resume shortly.