Submission to: Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights We echo the concerns of our colleagues across the community sector about the punitive aspects of ParentsNext. The program can exacerbate the financial issues facing single parents. Between July 2018 and February 2021, over 52,000 parents had their payments suspended, for an average of 5 days. Just over 1,000 parents had their payments cancelled. Many of these people would have faced a financial crisis as a result. This increases demand for emergency relief services, including food. Some people will have gone into debt to cover the financial shortfall, including high cost payday loans. The problem is that ParentsNext is a one size fits all program. Instead what is needed is targeted, strength-based support.