No plans to bring welfare card to Maryborough: O'Brien

MARYBOROUGH'S Federal representative, Wide Bay MP Llew O'Brien has confirmed there are no plans in place to bring the Cashless Debit Card to his electorate.

The Wide Bay MP told the Chronicle he will wait to see how effective the card is in Hervey Bay and Bundaberg during the 12-month trial.

The Federal LNP Government announced on Thursday they will roll out the cashless card in the Hinkler electorate early next year.

"In my former career as a police officer I've seen the results of addiction and substance abuse and the impact this has on children who suffer through neglect as a consequence of that addiction," Mr O'Brien said yesterday.

"We have to do everything we can to stop both forms of abuse, parents abusing substances leading to children being neglected, so the card may have some merit under some circumstances.

"The effectiveness of the card will be reviewed after 12 months and I look forward to seeing the results of the trial."

About 6400 people aged 35 or under on either unemployment benefits or parenting payments across the electorate will be placed on the card.

Meanwhile Maryborough state MP Bruce Saunders has vowed to fight against the Cashless Debit Card if any attempt is made to expand the welfare program into the Heritage City.

Mr Saunders accused the Federal Government of outsourcing social security to Indue.

"I think it's a low act," he said.

Mr Saunders was also unimpressed by the the sudden announcement of the card.

"This is the sneakiest government I've ever seen," he said.

Mr Saunders said he was concerned the cashless card would eventually be expanded to people not just on unemployment benefits or parenting payments aged 35 or under.

Topics:  fraser coast hervey bay maryborough wide bay

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