This chapter addresses the role of income support policy in an inclusive growth agenda. It looks at the characteristics of the Australian system of income support and the evidence of its impacts. This is followed by a discussion of trends in income inequality and the effectiveness of the Australian tax and social security systems in reducing inequality. The final section comments on broad options to reform the Australian income-support system, asking whether proposed reforms adequately deal with current and emerging social risks. The Australian colonies pioneered labour market reforms, introduced minimum wages in the nineteenth century and in 1904 the Commonwealth introduced a Conciliation and Arbitration Court to arbitrate industrial disputes and make awards that determined the pay and conditions of wage earners. The public social security system needs to be seen within a broad framework.
|Title of host publication||Inclusive Growth in Australia: Social policy as economic investment|
|Editors||Paul Smyth and John Buchanan|
|Place of Publication||Crows Nest, Australia|
|Publisher||Allen & Unwin|
|Publication status||Published - 2013|