The federal government’s Cashless Debit Card Trial, which began in selected communities in South Australia and Western Australia from March 2016, is a significant innovation in tackling the health and socioeconomic disadvantages in communities with high rates of social security dependency for long periods of time, and – in many cases – across generations. It is simply wrong to say, as some have argued, that the card causes social and economic harm.

Let me provide some context: it is clear that while there are historical and socioeconomic factors involved in the low life expectancy for Aboriginal people, the worsening rates of alcohol and illicit drug use are driving much of the illness and life-threatening behaviour – not just in remote communities, but across Australia.

Read the full article on The Conversation.

Publication Details