Housing stress, particularly among younger Australians, and job losses among workers aged 51 to 65 show the COVID-19 recession is causing insecurity at both ends of the life cycle, according to two new reports. Source: The Guardian.
By Daniel Hurst and Paul Carp, The Guardian
Nearly a third of people who have lost work or had hours cut as a result of the pandemic are aged 51 to 65 – fuelling “rapid growth” in the number of mature-age, low-income Australians who may fall through the cracks of government support, according to one paper prepared by the Brotherhood of St Laurence and the Nous Group, an international management consultancy firm.
In a separate study, the Australian National University found the proportion of Australians not able to meet their regular housing costs jumped from 6.9 per cent in April to 15.1 per cent in May, with young people the hardest hit.
The Brotherhood of St Laurence paper estimates nearly 400,000 Australians aged 51 to 65 have either lost work or had their hours cut as a result of the downturn.
The paper – titled “Hidden in plain sight” – calls on the Government to address discrimination experienced by mature-age workers and ensure social security benefits such as the jobseeker payment “remain above subsistence levels”.
The ANU study, based on a longitudinal survey of 3,200 Australians, also found particularly high levels of rental stress among people aged 18 to 24, with 445 unable to pay their rent on time.