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Thinking outside the box: strategies used by low-income single mothers to make ends meet
journal contributionposted on 2018-09-01, 00:00 authored by Hayley MckenzieHayley Mckenzie, Fiona McKayFiona McKay
Recent changes to Australia's welfare system have impacted low-income single parents who have been moved from a family payment, Parenting Payment Single, to a lower payment directed at individuals looking for work, Newstart Allowance. Research has shown that single-parent families are particularly vulnerable to the risk of financial deprivation and poverty, and this recent welfare payment change further compounds the often dire financial situation for these families. Twenty-three in-depth interviews were conducted with low-income single mothers who had been recently moved off the Parenting Payment Single and on to Newstart Allowance. As a result of this payment change and the decreased welfare assistance, the women spoke of needing to develop new strategies to compensate for their decreased income. This article focuses on the strategies these families developed and employed, exploring the women's ability to be resourceful in times of welfare changes.