Human Services Minister Alan Tudge shows what the cashless welfare card will look like.
Human Services Minister Alan Tudge shows what the cashless welfare card will look like. Amanda Coop

Welfare movers won't escape card roll-out

RESIDENTS placed on the cashless debit card program will not be exempt from the policy if they move to an area that does not have the card, the Department of Social Services has confirmed.

It follows concerns of a potential 'welfare migration' to areas like Maryborough should families attempt to re-locate from Hervey Bay when the card is rolled out in January next year.

A DSS spokeswoman said a person would remain on the card "so long as they continue to meet the payment and age criteria, even if they move to a non-cashless welfare card area".

Fears were first raised by Maryborough's Chamber of Commerce President Lance Stone, who said he was hearing feedback welfare recipients from Hinkler were approaching community housing to look for accommodation ahead of the card's introduction.

Similar fears have been raised in Hinkler's north, where unemployed Bundaberg people would cross the river and shift to the Flynn electorate, which incorporates Gin Gin and Moore Park Beach.

On the Fraser Coast, the roll-out will include Hervey Bay, Aldershot, Burrum Heads, Torbanlea, Toogoom, Howard, Childers, River Heads and Point Vernon.



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