Is poverty on the rise in Australia?

The 2020 Poverty in Australia Overview by the UNSW Social Policy Research Centre and the Australian Council of Social Services (ACOSS) finds that poverty rates have remained at much the same level for the past decade, despite economic growth. It shows more than 3.24 million people (13.6%), including 774,000 children under 15 (17.7%), are living below the poverty line. In Australia, the poverty line is $457 per week for a single adult.

2020 Poverty in Australia Overview continues efforts by the ACOSS/UNSW Sydney Poverty and Inequality Partnership to fill the knowledge gap about the prevalence and profile of poverty in Australia. Utilising the latest data available from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), it paints a picture of entrenched and deep poverty, despite Australia’s relatively high national wealth.

In this special seminar, the report's lead researcher, Bruce Bradbury and Peter Davidson, Senior Advisor at ACOSS, will explore the challenges in measuring poverty, findings from the latest report and the main drivers of change in poverty levels.

Scientia Professor Carla Treloar will introduce the seminar and set the scene of the Poverty and Inequality Partnership.

Associate Professor Bruce Bradbury is an economist and statistician with research interests including the measurement of living standards, child poverty, child development, income support and labour market policies, consumer equivalence scales, and the geographic dimensions of social policies.

Dr Peter Davidson is a Senior Advisor at ACOSS and Adjunct Senior Lecturer with the Social Policy Research Centre. Peter is a recognised expert in social security, employment and tax policy, and his research and policy interests include employment assistance, the labour market and unemployment, income support, poverty research, taxation and superannuation policy.

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