Shocking amount of money the Australian government spends on welfare every year – and it’s more than education
- Welfare makes up over a third of total government expenditure
- Consistently outstrips other areas like health and education
- Only to set to rise over coming years after ‘cost of living’ budget
The Australian government ploughs more money into social security and welfare than any other area – with the figures set to skyrocket following Labor’s recent ‘cost of living’ budget.
Over the past five years, welfare has accounted for just over a third of all government expenditure, completely dwarfing the spending on education, health and defence.
And it is set to surge under the current Labor administration, which unveiled a $15 billion package of welfare increases in its budget earlier this month.
Figures reveal there have been 40,000 Australians on JobSeeker for over 10 ten years despite there being over 400,000 job vacancies nationally
Welfare and social security spending consistently makes up over a third of total government expenditure (pictured)
Treasurer Jim Chalmers announced an enormous shake-up of Australia’s welfare state, from Centrelink to Medicare to childcare and retirement savings.
Treasurer Jim Chalmers (pictured) this month unveiled an enormous shake up to the welfare state in his ‘cost of living’ budget
Among a flurry of measure designed to tackle the cost of living crisis, Jobseeker payments – aka the dole – will rise by $40 per fortnight, while over five million households will be able to claim up to $500 in a cost of living rebate.
Government welfare spending, which includes JobSeeker payments, child care subsidies, family tax benefits, pension spending and the National Disability Insurance Scheme, consistently outstrips expenditure in other areas.
For the past five years, it has accounted for over a third of all government spending, according to the most recent review of government expenditure.
Estimates suggest over $205 billion will be spent on social security and welfare in 2023/24, a 20 per cent increase on the same figure in 2018/19.
Welfare spending skyrocketed to an estimated $227 billion during 2020/21 with programs like the Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment.
While it has declined since, it is continuing to trend upwards compared to pre-pandemic levels, according to government predictions.
Government estimates (pictured) indicate that welfare spending is going to increase over the next few years. The figures above do not include student payments, aged care expenses and the National Disability Insurance scheme so the actual estimates are likely to be far higher