Community attitudes: Incomes of those on the lowest incomes are too low and should be increased

This chart shows the responses in our Community attitudes towards poverty and inequality survey 2023 to the query whether the incomes of those in the lowest income group are too low and should be increased. It shows that 76% of people in Australia agreed that the incomes of those on the lowest incomes are too low and should be increased. Read the full report here: https://bit.ly/communityattitudes2023  


Community attitudes: The gap between the wealthy and those in poverty is too great and should be reduced

This chart shows the responses in our Community attitudes towards poverty and inequality survey 2023 to the idea that The gap between rich and poor is too great and should be reduced.  It shows that 74% of people agreed that the gap between the wealthy and those living in poverty is too great and should be reduced. Read the full report here: https://bit.ly/communityattitudes2023  


Community attitudes: Poverty is a problem that can be solved

This chart shows the responses in our Community attitudes towards poverty and inequality survey 2023 to the idea that Poverty is a problem that can be solved. It shows that 75% of people in Australia agreed that poverty is a problem that can be solved with the right systems and policies.  Read the full report here: https://bit.ly/communityattitudes2023  


Community attitudes: Government policies have caused some people to experience poverty

This chart shows the responses in our Community attitudes towards poverty and inequality survey 2023 to the statement Government policies have caused some people to be poor It shows that 62% of people in Australia agreed that government policies have caused some people in Australia to experience poverty. Read the full report here: https://bit.ly/communityattitudes2023 


Average annual change in disposable income during COVID-19

This chart shows how income inequality declined sharply in year one of the Covid recovery (2020-21) but was restored to its previous level in year two (2021-22). It shows that, in year one (2020-21), inequality declined. The average income of the lowest 20% grew by 5.2% after inflation, compared with 3% for the middle 20% and 2.4% for the highest 20%. In year two (2021-22) this pattern was reversed. The average income of the lowest 20% fell by 3.5%, compared with a fall of 0.5% for the middle 20% and a fall of 0.1% for the highest 20%. When we compare average growth in incomes for the two-year recovery period from 2019-20 to 2021-22, these effects largely cancel each other out leaving little change in income inequality overall. The income of the lowest 20% grew by an average of 0.8% per year, compared with 1.3% per year for the middle 20% and 1.1% per year for the highest 20%.


Average changes in hours worked and household incomes during COVID-19

This chart shows the changes in incomes and work hours during first years of the COVID-19 pandemic. It shows that, during ‘year one’ of recovery (2020-21), average household after-tax incomes grew by an extraordinary 3.1% after inflation, much faster than average income growth since the Global Financial Crisis. This occurred despite strict COVID lockdowns and the economic uncertainty surrounding the pandemic, which reduced average paid working hours per capita by 0.5% compared to hours worked in 2019-20. During ‘year two’ (2021-22), these trends were reversed. Average household incomes declined by 0.7% after inflation despite the reduced severity of lockdowns and a solid 2.4% increase in overall paid working hours per capita.


Comparison of poverty trend and SDG target path

This chart shows the percentage of people in poverty between 1999-20 to 2019-20 and compares this with the percentage of people in poverty if we were following the target set out in the UN Sustainable Development Goals, of which Australia is a signatory. The Sustainable Development Goal on poverty includes: "By 2030, reduce at least by half the proportion of men, women and children of all ages living in poverty in all its dimensions according to national definitions" (note that this chart uses 50% of median income in lieu of an accepted national definition of poverty in Australia).


Number of people in poverty by location in 2019-20, and change in poverty

  Poverty was somewhat higher (at 2,232,000 people) among people living in capital cities than among those living outside them (1,087,000 people). Poverty rates were highest in non-urban areas in the smallest States and Territories, including 52,000 people outside the capital in Tasmania, 57,000 people outside the capital in South Australia, and 28,000 people in the Northern Territory. The greatest reductions in poverty in the fourth quarter of 2019-20 occurred outside the capital in Victoria (by 125,000 people), in Brisbane (by 196,000 people), in Hobart (by 13,000 people), and in the Australian Capital Territory (by 21,000 people).


Rate of poverty by location in 2019-20, and change in poverty

  Poverty was somewhat higher (at 13.4%) among people living in capital cities than among those living outside them (13.3%). Two thirds (67%) of people in poverty lived in capital cities, which is broadly equivalent to the population share living in those cities. Poverty rates were highest in non-urban areas in the smallest States and Territories, including 17.7% outside the capital in Tasmania, 17.4% outside the capital in South Australia, and 15.8% in the Northern Territory. The greatest reductions in poverty in the fourth quarter of 2019-20 occurred outside the capital in Victoria (by 8.9%), in Brisbane (by 7.4%), in Hobart (by 5.5%), and in the Australian Capital Territory (by 4.8%).


Poverty in income support households (2019-20 compared with previous years - % of people)

  Poverty was higher overall in 2019-20 in ‘income support households’, with large increases for those reliant on Parenting Payment and Carer Payment, but much lower in those relying mainly on JobSeeker Payment and Youth Allowance.