The Child Poverty Report
We are committed to reducing child poverty. We passed the Child Poverty Reduction Act 2018 to make sure that current and future governments are held to account for decisions that have economic, fiscal and wellbeing impacts on children in poverty.
The Act requires the Government to set three-year and 10-year reduction targets on three primary measures of child poverty. The Government has announced its targets for reducing child poverty, which are:
|Child poverty reduction targets (% of children)|
|Primary measure||Baseline rate (2017/18)||3-year target rate (2020/21)||10-year target rate (2027/28)|
|Low income before housing costs - 50% of median, moving line (BHC50)||16.5%||10.5%||5%|
|Low income after housing costs - 50% of median, fixed line (AHC50)||22.8%||18.8%||10%|
What are we doing to reduce child poverty?
Budget 2019 builds on investment in the Families Package, which increased the Family Tax Credit and Accommodation Supplement, and introduced the Winter Energy and Best Start payments.
In Budget 2019 we are focusing on increasing household incomes through income support changes ($535.1 million over four years). Indicatively, 146,000 families with 269,000 children will receive additional income from 1 April 2020, increasing to around $20 more per week by 1 April 2023.
The combined impact of these in 2020/21 is expected to be a reduction to:
- between 10.1% and 12.7% of children in poverty (between 115,000 and 144,000 children) on the BHC measure (compared with the 3-year target of 10.5% of children), and
- between 15.2% and 18.6% of children in poverty (between 172,000 and 212,000 children) on the AHC measure (compared with the 3-year target of 18.8% of children).
We are also investing in initiatives that will have a more indirect impact on child poverty and are designed to ease the pressures faced by families, such as changes to health, housing and education settings.