The last comprehensive review of the Australian social security system was conducted over thirty years ago. Australia’s economic and social landscape has changed markedly since then, and the system must adapt to these changes to ensure its ongoing relevance and efficacy.
Reform of the system must recognise, respect and reinforce its profound impact on the lives and wellbeing of millions of Australians, not only during childhood and retirement but also when unexpected needs arise in-between. It is time for a fundamental reassessment of how the system can best promote social inclusion and encourage economic contribution in current and future circumstances.
This book brings together leading social security researchers and policy analysts to reflect on past trends, the key changes that the system must adapt to and what this will involve. Its contributors share a vision inspired by the groundbreaking work of Ronald Henderson, who argued for a debate that is grounded in evidence and informed by a coherent set of principles.
The book’s chapters highlight the weaknesses of the current system and propose viable alternatives, showing that there is no lack of new ideas on which to draw. One of these-the introduction of a basic income as Henderson recommended in the 1970s – is used to illustrate the need for a better understanding of what such reforms can offer today and how they might work in practice.
SOURCE: Peter Saunders. “Revisiting Henderson: Poverty, social security and basic income” Melbourne University Publishing, 1st April 2019.
[BOOK – Revisiting Henderson: Poverty Social Security and Basic Income available for loan to Brotherhood staff]
Produced by the librarians at the Brotherhood of St Laurence in Melbourne, Australia