ROLL OUT: Bundaberg resident Jodie McNally spoke about the Cashless Debit Card on A Current Affair when it was introduced in the Hinkler electorate earlier this year..
ROLL OUT: Bundaberg resident Jodie McNally spoke about the Cashless Debit Card on A Current Affair when it was introduced in the Hinkler electorate earlier this year.. contributed

LNP Cashless Card: Change now traps those forced onto it

HINKLER MP Keith Pitt doesn't want recipients of the Cashless Debit Card misled and getting their hopes up that there is an easy out, after changes were passed in Parliament this week.

"Yesterday (Thursday) in Parliament the CDC trials in Ceduna, the East Kimberley and the Goldfields were extended with the support of both the Coalition and the Labor Party, and all trials will now finish on June 30, 2020," Mr Pitt said in a release.

Mr Pitt accused the Greens of spreading misinformation about the card and said it was important to have the truth about the changes "out there" about the policy, which was introduced in the Hinkler electorate in January and will impact about 6000 people.

The CDC operates by quarantining 80 per cent of a person's income support payment to a debit card that cannot be used to purchase alcohol, gamble or withdraw cash.

"Applications can be made from July, in line with the criteria set out in the legislation. The Secretary of the Department of Social Services will then need to carefully assess these criteria before removing anyone from the trial," Mr Pitt.

"The criteria to be considered include, but is not limited to, financial management, the interest of any children, the risk of homelessness, the person's individual health and safety and other circumstances.

"I look forward to the trial's rollout being completed in the Hinkler electorate and seeing the positive effect we expect to see locally on some very tough social issues."

Federal Minister for Families and Social Services Paul Fletcher said the card was one of the "most positive developments in welfare for decades, making a real difference in the lives of thousands of Australians". "It offers a more streamlined approach to welfare quarantining and benefits to taxpayers," Mr Fletcher said.