Author: 
Samuel Mortimer
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In Australia more than three million people, or 13 per cent of the population, are living below the poverty line of $433 a week (ACOSS). Many of the people affected are living in deep poverty - an average of $135 a week below the poverty line.

The group of people experiencing poverty the most are, perhaps unsurprisingly, those relying on Government allowance payments such as Youth Allowance and Newstart.

Anti-Poverty Week on 13-19 October is a yearly event supporting the Australian community to better understand poverty and to take action collectively to end it.

An important part of the week is the Day of Action on 17 October, focussing on the Raise the Rate campaign which is aimed at increasing the rate of Newstart and associated allowances by at least $75 a week.

With around a million Australians reliant on payments which have not been increased in real terms for more than 25 years, Anti-Poverty Week is drawing attention to the quality of life experienced by those living on $40 a day. 

Any activity, large or small, that helps people to express their interest and concern about any aspect of local, national or global poverty is being encouraged by organisers.

Other ways you can get involved:

  • Tell people about poverty - organise a talk or presentation by someone who has experienced the effects of poverty or worked closely with someone who has done so.
  • Encourage debate or discussion on the issue - you could organise a workshop, seminar or conference on particular poverty issues. 
  • Call for action - contact your MP and explain you would like to see an increase to Newstart, using this resource to find the local MP's phone number.
  • Join the campaign to Raise the Rate.
  • Share the information about Anti-Poverty Week on social media using the hashtags #RaisetheRate #AntiPovertyWeek #APW2019.

To find out more about the week, or to register your event with organisers, visit the Anti-Poverty Week website.

You can find annual Queensland-specific cost of living reports on the QCOSS website.

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