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Inaccuracy of Centrelink debt notices not acceptable: Xenophon

6 January 2017
Hamish Macdonald
RN Breakfast

South Australia Senator Nick Xenophon says he's been inundated with complaints about Centrelink debt letters and referred the matter to the ombudsman late last month.

'The issue is if someone has been overpaid then you need to deal with it, although there is another issue and that is the current social welfare system is incredibly punitive. If you earn $104 a fortnight, if you give it a go and work a few hours at a retail shop or whatever, you find your benefits are slashed significantly', he says.

'If there's a proposal to, on an all parties basis sit down and analyse what occurred here, to learn from those lessons, to maximise the fairness in terms of getting those debts that are due and payable, but also to ensure that we don't have literally thousands of Australians getting quite distressed over the Christmas break, I think we can work through this'.