A Benbrika With Benefits.A bit of an update to an interesting topic: How much are we paying terrorists and their supporters?
So one of our local terrorists, one Abdul Nacer Benbrika has been found guilty of terrorism charges, which to me would seem a foregone conclusion given his willingness to declare allah's laws against the Laws of Australia all those years ago.
I wasn't on the jury, so my opinion is only that; an opinion.
In my previous post, I had a quick squiz at what sort of benefits Mrs Benbrika would be getting, since by all reports she was indeed receiving them, and decided it was time to have another look.
Apart from all the money ($25mil* and counting) spent on the trial, with more to come, there are still the day-to-day living expenses of the poor, impoverished families of Benbrika and co to consider.
I'll take Mr Benbrika as my example, since I've been there before.
All my costings come from the Centrelink website, which is publicly available.
Now, in the time that our mate Abdul has been incarcerated, his wife has given birth to another child. She was, by all accounts, pregnant with this child when he was arrested back in Dec '05.
For this example, I'll make an arbitrary guess at the ages of the children. It'll have to be arbitrary because a)I've not got a clue and b)I have neither the time nor the inclination to go stalking through teh interwebz for this sort of detail. Plus, that could also constitute an invasion of the children's privacy, and that's not by bag.
But back to the lesson.
We have a woman on benefits. She has 7 children between the ages of 2 and 16, her husband is in jail.
What does she get under our current system?
First of all comes her parenting payment. She is entitled to this if:
* you are single and have at least one child aged under 8 who is wholly or substantially in your care and who is in Australia (or temporarily outside Australia for less than 13 weeks)
Please Note: You will have part-time participation requirements* from when your youngest child is aged 6
* you are partnered and have at least one child aged under 6 who is wholly or substantially in your care and who is in Australia (or temporarily outside Australia for less than 13 weeks)
* your and/or your partner's (if you have one) income and assets are below a certain amount, and
* you meet residence requirements.
In her case, as her husband is in jail, she gets the extra benefit of $472.80. If he were not in jail, then she would receive $394.40. Apparently parents with a partner in jail need extra money because of the hardship they endure over and above being stuck at home with the kids.
Of course, the extra $78.40 is also payable to people who have partners who are sick and unable to work as well, but this exercise is not for those. I'm looking specifically at people who believe that as catmeat I should be covered up, and blowing up Australia is a Good Thing. I'm really not into supporting those sorts of beliefs.
Let's move onto the Family Tax Benefit Part A. There are different rates for different ages, but I'm going with:
1 child of 16 (min rate $48.30/ft - max $48.30/ft)
2 children between 13-15 (min rate $48.30 - max $196.84)
4 children under 13 (min rate $48.30 - max $151.34)
Since this payment is per child, you can see there is a nice incentive for plenty of children.
In our example, we are looking at FTB A ranging from $338.10/ft minimum rate to $1047.34 maximum rate per fortnight.
Not too shabby there, either.
Then we come to FTB Part B, which is a regular payment but is not predicated upon the number of children one has. It is a flat rate of $128.80/ft.
And one more for good luck, there is also a large family supplement of $10.36 for the 3rd and each subsequent child in a family, which in this case amounts to an extra $51.80/ft.
If this is a bit confusing, here it is again:
$ 472.80 parenting payment.
$ 338.10 FTB A (min rate)
$ 128.80 FTB B
$ 51.80 large family supplement.
$ 991.50 total benefits (so far at minimum rate).
Or we can look at it again with the maximum rate applied.
$ 472.80 parenting payment
$1047.34 FTB A (,ax rate)
$ 128.80 FTB B
$ 51.80 large family supplement
$1700.74 total benefits (so far at max rate)
But wait, as they say in the classics.... there's more....!
Since we know that the seventh child was born whilst Benbrika was in jail, we can have a look at what sort of payments are available to help with that sort of thing.
The Baby Bonus is currently standing at $5000 per child. If you have twins, that means you get $10000. Who wouldn't get knocked up for that?
The Maternity Immunisation Allowance, which is a bit of a misnomer since you don't actually have to get your child immunised, is a $243.30 one-off payment when your child is between 18-24 months and is (supposedly) up to date on all their shots.
You are allowed to have medical reasons or you can conscientiously object and still get this payment. Go figure.
There are also benefits available to offset the cost of childcare, but since Rakia Benbrika prefers niqab to usual dress, and has a toddler at home, it's unlikely she's interested in those benefits.
There are also rent assistance, the pharmaceutical benefits scheme, and all manner of other concessions available.
So just to sum up, before I fry your brains with more figures, Benbrika's wife, if she has no income apart from Centrelink, is potentially receiving between $991.50 - $1700.74 a fortnight. TAX FREE
That is between $25,779.00 - $44,219.24 per annum. Again, TAX FREE, and just from Centrelink.
I've not studied other sources of financial support, although I have no doubt that there would be a few.
I'm just using Centrelink as a baseline.
*$8.1million of that is for Legal Aid, which procured the services of several QCs. Great work if you can get it!