Aug 25th 2022

GetUp welcomes Royal Commission into dangerous “Robodebt” scheme

Accountability and answers on the Robodebt crisis is an important step forward

GetUp welcomes the announcement by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese of a Royal Commission to examine who was responsible for the scheme, what advice informed its design, how complaints were handled, what problems were known about its legality and the total cost to taxpayers and the harm caused to victims.

In 2017 GetUp launched Fraudstop, a free community service that lets anyone launch an appeal against a Robodebtebt letter in just five minutes. Fraudstop was funded by 5630 GetUp members with more than 8500 people having used the tool since its inception. 

Accountability and answers on the Robodebt crisis is an important step forward, but the commission must also examine how Robodebt has continued in various forms through harsh welfare debts that pile more hardship onto people already struggling to get by. 

GetUp’s Senior Economic Fairness Campaigner, Madeleine Burkitt said:

“We welcome Prime Minister Albanese’s announcement of a Royal Commission into the cruel and dangerous Robodebt scheme. Those responsible for the disastrous scheme must be held accountable.

“Cruel welfare debts didn’t stop with Robodebt. We urge the Prime Minister to ensure the terms of reference for the Royal Commission examine all forms of welfare debt.

“This is a significant opportunity to reform our failing welfare system that punishes people when they fall on hard times. We cannot risk repeating the mistakes of previous governments.”


Media contact: Amy Morgan, 0455 595 642