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Your views: on Centrelink payments and AFL

Reader contributions

Today, readers comment on cutting back pandemic-boosted JobSeeker, holding the ball and a local AFL game.

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Commenting on the story: Slashing Centrelink payment will increase poverty, hurt economy: SACOSS

I am on JobSeeker and yes, I’ve been able to catch up on very behind bills, actually have meat and vegetables with my meals. I’ve got enough to get the bus or taxi/Uber to necessary appointments.

As a result I can be a healthier, happier, less-stressed version of myself. I have more confidence in myself and am not so terrified, and motivated to apply for positions advertised that are suitable for my skills.

I suffer chronic asthma and now I can afford all of the medications prescribed in my asthma action plan. To go back to the $565pft, I won’t have all my meds again, and only a diet of Nutri-Grain, Vegemite on toast and noodles. Stressing how I’m going to get to appointments etc.

Yes there might be some “bludgers”, that will waste money and avoid employment opportunities, but I’m sure they are the minority, people just like to point out the cons, negatives, failures, and downside to most things because humans instinctively love drama and to pick at all the bad things.

We have forgotten somewhere along the way how to look at the successes and pros and positives, and that it’s ok to be happy, we are actually allowed to strive and achieve and be proud of that. 

Why don’t government and politicians truly want to see all people of Australia have the means to feel healthy, confident and motivated to be the best in life, society, the community, in the family unit, at home?

And let’s face it, in this day and age it’s all about spend spend spend – not many, if any, “shoe box stashes”. So it’s all money going back into our economy. Isn’t that what makes an economy strong? – Shae Hamilton

I am thankful for the extra payment ($550.00) as I live in the rural area of WA and our essential food and some medication (over the counter)  prices have gone up.

Also I have been able to pay bills without having to stress about going without food, power or medication. I am so grateful for the extra payment as it means my anxiety is not highlighted by these issues. – Ellen-Margaret Southall

It is not only imperative that the government support the unemployed and underemployed with the continuation of the elevated JobSeeker payments of $1100 per fortnight on into 2021, but trying to force the incentive to work by reducing the payments is shortsightedness.

People may be keen to find work, but getting a job is another story. There is not only a lack of work, but also unprecedented competition for those jobs – there seems to be a total lack of appreciation by the Government of how difficult it actually is these days to secure a new job, and this  pandemic has made it 500% worse.

Added to that is the Government’s insistence that people be on the bones of their arse by subjecting jobseekers to the cash assets test again, starting on 28 September. Denying people JobSeeker financial support for up to three months is counter-productive in building security for people when they have high rents or mortgages and extended day-to-day expenses to pay for the many many months it may take to secure a new job in this era. 

How does the government think people can survive on the measly $5,500 threshold they place on JobSeeker before their payments are placed under forced waiting periods?  $5,500 goes nowhere in this day and age. Placing people on extended waiting periods so they use all their savings so they become destitute again is going to be detrimental to those jobseekers, and severely hamper our economy.

Lift those cash asset tests so the unemployed can avoid slumping into forced poverty. Now more than ever, jobseekers need to maintain some financial security until sufficient jobs become readily available. Making someone wait for up to three months for income support to kick in will create deepening poverty for hundreds of thousands of people in the long run. 

Lifting those liquid asset tests for the unemployed who have cash assets below far higher thresholds would be the most intelligent step forward for the country. Celestine Hutchinson

What about pensioners? It’s all about jobseekers. Pensioners are doing it hard, too.

I get $335.00 a week. I have to pay for food, electric, phone bill, car registration, car insurance, medicine, food. Some fortnight I’m left with $20 dollars in my pocket. I don’t leave my house because I can’t afford to do anything. – Shane Coote

Commenting on the story: Reactive AFL tosses out its rule book

Michelangelo Rucci’s article on umpiring and rules did a good job at explaining the mess the AFL have created by prioritising other factors over simply umpiring to the laws of the game.

The AFL is constantly banging on about ‘the look of the game’ but their bureaucrats are so shortsighted that each change makes the game less appealing and adds further confusion.

The prior holding the ball rule is clear – if a player has had prior opportunity they must immediately legally dispose of it when tackled. So why do we see five seconds of wrestling or rolling around on the ground after a tackle has been legally applied?

Why does the AFL think fans prefer the rules to be ignored in the name of ‘keeping the game flowing’ than for holding the ball free kicks or ball ups correctly paid? To add further confusion, the AFL then allows other players to jump on top of the scrimmage specifically to ‘lock the ball in’ – a completely unnecessary and dangerous aspect of the game and one which defeats the purpose of the umpires ignoring holding the ball frees or ball up calls in the first place.

It’s also obvious that AFL clubs are now coaching players to grab, hold or lay on top of players who have taken a mark or been awarded a free kick to allow teammates an extra few seconds to flood back.

These Rugby League style delay-of-game tactics could be easily eradicated by umpires paying 50m penalties in line with the rules, and with record low scoring and a poor visual spectacle in footy at the moment it’s staggering the AFL can’t get it right. – Jim Dunham

The rules evolved – truly, they evolved – over a hundred and more years. Indeed, recent times have seen the introduction of several useful rules like the kick-in and out of bounds on the full.

 The advent of the AFL with its big money stakes and ambitious careerists and status seekers has also seen a deterioration of adjudicating tried and true rules at the hands of so many who think they know better. Whoever thought free kicks slow the game down were clearly grossly mistaken. The umpires have the power to move the game on if they see time wasting.

Frees for in the back, holding the man or the ball, and incorrect disposal open up the game, as Halbert says. Too often, the tackled player contrives to drop the ball, or is given far too long to dispose of it, leading to a maul.

Too often, players whose skill and luck sees them in a better position, including in a marking contest, are pushed in the back. Not much skill in that. Or they are tagged by hand, which is holding the man. In ruck contests, players grab each other. It is too easy to say they are both to blame and let it continue on in an ugly wrestling match. Give a free against the first to grab hold, or restart until they stop doing it. Both would quickly lead to rucks giving it up. Then we might see more Nic Nats leaping at the ball or a John Nicholls standing his ground like a great oak. This was common a few decades ago.

Rules should reward skill. That is the criterion for good rules. They should be consistently and fairly umpired. How often do we hear so-called commentators bay for dropping the rule book in finals when skill protected and fostered by the rules should win out? This attitude is a significant contributor to the current confusion and deskilling of the game.

The game is now a professional sport with coaching, fitness, and skills to match. This should be the backbone of an attractive, fast-moving game that is great to play and watch. – Craig Delaney

As someone who enjoys footy, from my point of view there are to many components to holding the ball.

The relevant two are rule 18 16.1 and 18 16.2. 18 16.3 is unnecessary.

Push in the back should also be pretty obvious and paid on it’s merits. – Melissa Ford

Commenting on the story: Adelaide Oval to host Demons-Roos clash

I like the footy. But James Sage (Your views 31/7) is right. Hosting this match is irrational and unconscionable.

How many plastic cups of beer have to be sold for it to be worth the potentially devastating consequences? Would not the high cost of going to games combined with the high cost of (‘discounted’) food and drink be better spent on almost anything in terms of economic stimulus in Adelaide? 

It’s beyond disappointing. Shame on all concerned. Cathy Chua

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