Inclusion of an extra $1,000 a year for 140,000 families with stay-at-home mums has been welcomed by Queensland Senator Matt Canavan.
“I have been campaigning for more support for single-income families since I was elected as a Senator two years ago,” he said. “This is great news for families throughout Australia.”
It has been revealed that part of the re-negotiated Coalition agreement between the Nationals and Liberals is an increase in Family Tax Benefit Part B payments to some stay-at-home-parent families with a child below the age of one.
Though a member of the LNP in Queensland, Senator Canavan sits as a member of the Nationals in Parliament.
“This is an issue I’m passionate about,” Senator Canavan said. “Our tax and welfare system has tilted the playing field too much against parents who choose to stay at home and look after their children. It is inefficient, unfair and ignores the development benefits of stay-at-home parenting for children.”
Senator Canavan recommended changes in a formal submission to the Commonwealth Government discussion paper on taxation earlier this year.
“Because a working couple can access two tax-free thresholds where a single-income family can access only one, a single-income family earning $120,000 pays $10,000 a year more in tax than a double-income family also earning a total of $120,000 a year.
“Our tax system subsidises both parents to go to work. That's exactly the wrong way around. We should be encouraging more people to stay at home with their children, particularly when they are young.
"I firmly believe that we must move our tax system to one based on the family, not the individual.”
Senator Canavan said the increase in Family Tax Benefit Part B payments would go some way towards redressing the current imbalance.
“I have had firm support for a better deal for single-income families from my Nationals colleagues,” he said.
“This is an important issue for young families throughout Australia but particularly in regional areas, where single-income families tend to be more common than in some city areas.
“I am all about giving parents more freedom of choice about whether they go back to work or stay at home with young children.”