QCOSS does not support the expansion of mandatory income management through a Cashless Debit Card (CDC). We believe that addressing complex health and social issues, such as alcohol, drug and gambling problems, through the welfare system is fundamentally flawed. There is a lack of evidence of a causal link between people receiving income support and people with alcohol, drug and gambling problems. Participation in the Cashless Debit Card should only be on a voluntary basis and supported by a suite of relevant support services.
QCOSS cautions that the Cashless Debit Card may further stigmatise welfare recipients in areas where there are limited economic options and has the potential to divide communities.
This report reviews the Cashless Debit Card Trial and evaluation focussing primarily on the Final Evaluation Report released by the Australian Government in September 2017. The Evaluation by Orima Research, is intended to evaluate the Trial in the first two trial sites of Ceduna, South Australia and in East Kimberley, Western Australia. As well as analysing the Final Evaluation Report itself, this review also examines the extensive expert commentary on the trial and evaluation.