Former prime minister Tony Abbott has suggested several ways to maintain the boosted rate of the dole once the coronavirus crisis is over.
Former prime minister Tony Abbott has suggested several ways to maintain the boosted rate of the dole once the coronavirus crisis is over.

Tony Abbott mulls retention of double-dole

Former prime minister Tony Abbott has suggested several ways to maintain the boosted rate of the dole once the coronavirus crisis is over.

Mr Abbott, who famously slashed various welfare payments while in power, said the doubled JobSeeker allowance did not necessarily need to be withdrawn.

"I'd be inclined to turn it into a wage subsidy for older people and a part-time environmental job with local government for younger people," he wrote in The Australian on Friday.

Mr Abbott introduced a "green army" as leader but the program was axed after he was deposed.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has dashed hopes of keeping JobSeeker at its inflated rate after the pandemic, saying the policy was only budgeted for a fixed period.

Mr Abbott said he would base the decision on improving society rather than improving the budget.

"Eventually, the budget will improve because people will earn their pay (and won't need subsidies) and people will choose their job (and won't just stay where they were allocated)," he wrote.

"But the successful political leaders will be those who make it less about economics and more about ensuring people have purpose in their lives."

Originally published as Tony Abbott mulls retention of double-dole


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