Paul Smyth on ‘A new welfare morality?’

Yesterday a short article by Paul Smyth went up on The Drum. I’m not sure why the question mark is in the title, but it does signpost the position of Paul Smyth and the Brotherhood of St Laurence.

… John Falzon fulminates against conditionality as a form of ‘paternal damnation’. In this view it is structural inequality which robs individuals of their life chances and it is the ultimate in hypocrisy for our governments to then turn round and attribute poverty and exclusion to the actions of the poor themselves. […] While this ‘waiting for the revolution’ rhetoric might strike those outside welfare politics as oddly utopian it is important to note its deep roots in the welfare sector. […]

The reality is that the Brotherhood for some years now has been trying to find a new middle ground for welfare policy. […]… the reality [of this Federal Budget] is an emerging new welfare morality based on welfare as an investment in citizens. While the model remains very much a work in progress, it is clear that it will take more upfront investment not less. In this way the model will ultimately test everyone’s sense of social obligation and not just those in receipt of welfare.

You can go read the article on the ABC website.


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