5.1 This chapter examines the social security frameworks relevant to this Inquiry—the legal framework and the agencies that administer it; the policy framework, including underlying principles; and the relevance of family violence in the social security system. The ALRC makes recommendations in the key areas of interpretative frameworks around family violence, screening, and collecting information about family violence.

5.2 In considering safety, in the context of social security, the ALRC refers both to actual safety from harm but also to financial security and independence through social security payments and entitlements.

5.3 In order to enhance the common interpretative framework, the ALRC recommends that the definition of family violence, and its nature, features and dynamics, be included in the Guide to Social Security Law, supported by training for relevant Centrelink staff.

5.4 The ALRC also considers that, to ensure fairness in the administration of the social security system and to provide a level of self-agency, greater transparency and consistency is required in relation to the information a person can rely on to support a claim of family violence. The ALRC therefore makes a recommendation that a broad range of types of information should be available to be relied on to support a claim of family violence. Finally, the ALRC recommends defined ‘intervention points’ at which Centrelink should promote the disclosure of family violence.[1]

[1] See Rec 4–1.