Hayes goes on attack

FOWLER MP Chris Hayes says the average Fairfield family will be $5000 worse off a year because of the impact of the 2014 federal budget.

Mr Hayes, the chief opposition whip, said the cuts proposed in the budget would have a significant impact on his constituents because the area he covers is a lower socioeconomic area, with an average wage of $34,000.

"Most households are single-income and the cuts to the family payments and other benefits will have a very significant impact on them," Mr Hayes said.

He said Fowler will also be greatly affected by changes to when people will be able to receive the Newstart unemployment allowance.

"Fowler is one of the highest unemployment areas in the country, with close to double the national rate.

"One of the major concerns is that people unemployed people under 25 will now have to switch over to the Youth Allowance, which will mean that they will get about half of the amount that they are on now.

"And with the universities now free to charge whatever they want in HECS, it is predicted that the average price of an arts degree or the equivalent will more than double from $12,000 to $15,000 now to about $30,000 and it could possibly get higher as universities use this opportunity to test the market."

He said that the brunt of Tony Abbott's tough budget would be felt by those least able to bear it.

"By targeting welfare and making all of these cuts, the government is showing where their priorities lie.

"I met with a pensioner association recently and they told me they were particularly concerned about the $7 Medicare co-payment, because they go to the doctor more than other people."

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