FEDERAL Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch is urging local students who are experiencing significant delays with their Austudy payments to contact his office for help.
“I’m keenly aware that some students are still waiting to be paid their Austudy allowance after applying in January – which obviously has a huge impact on their ability to study full-time while still paying rent and other bills,” said Mr Entsch.
“The Department of Human Services has received tens of thousands of applications from students across the country, and is currently working through a backlog from the start of the academic year.
“I’ve already had a number of students contact my office for help, and fortunately we have contacts at Centrelink who are able to prioritise applications where students are facing financial difficulties,” he said.
Austudy is the Federal Government’s financial support package provided to full-time students and apprentices aged over 25 years. The amount of support can be up to $567 per fortnight for single parents with children, but depends on individual circumstances.
Mr Entsch says anyone who is still waiting on their Austudy claim – especially if they’re facing financial hardship – should get in touch with his office immediately.
“I also want to reassure local students that their Austudy payments will be backdated to the date they first became eligible for it, rather than just the date their payment starts,” he said.
He added that students need to make sure they have provided the Department of Human Services with all the relevant supporting paperwork required for the claim to prevent further payment delays.
Mr Entsch’s office can be contacted on 4051 2220 or firstname.lastname@example.org