The federal government is reportedly considering changes to unemployment benefits in the budget that would mean people under 25 could no longer receive Newstart payments.
Under existing rules people can apply for the fortnightly unemployment payment when they turn 22, but this government proposal would mean extending the wait for another three years.
Those under 25 would have to apply for the Youth Allowance instead, which is around $100 less per fortnight than Newstart, The Australian reports.
It’s hoped that if adopted, this measure and another requiring school leavers to wait six months before applying for Youth Allowance, would encourage more young people into work.
The prime minister’s office would not discuss specific budget measures when comment was sought.
It’s widely expected there will be significant changes to unemployment benefits in the May 13 budget.
The Commission of Audit report this week recommended older jobseekers, who now get more than younger people on Newstart or other working age payments, get the same rate.
The government has made it clear it wants more people in work and fewer on welfare, and has adopted an “earning or learning” slogan to push its agenda.