Former NSW minister Pru Goward wrote a column in the Australian Financial Review last week about Australia’s “underclass,” who she says are lazy, dysfunctional and don’t like the “discipline” of work.
This was condemned by anti-poverty advocates as disturbing, but it was not terribly surprising. Australia has a long history of stigmatising those without work.
The idea that unemployed people are work-shy is also conveyed in one of Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s catchphrases: “the best form of welfare is a job”. But this is not always a straightforward proposition.