The deadline has passed for the issuing of financial penalties to parents that have not vaccinated their children under the federal government’s “No Jab No Pay” policy.
The Department of Human Services wrote to about 130,000 families whose immunisation records were not up to date as of July 1, advising them they had until September 3 to take action.
Those that had not responded by the deadline will have their Family Tax Benefit Part A payments reduced by $28.28 each fortnight for every child not vaccinated, providing a constant reminder for parents to keep their children’s immunisation up to date.
The money was previously deducted at the end of the year from the withheld portion of the benefit.
Speaking last month ahead of the deadline, then-Minister for Social Services Dan Tehan said the No Jab, No Pay policy had encouraged almost 250,000 families to take action since it was introduced by the federal government in 2016.
“Immunisation is the safest way to protect children from vaccine-preventable diseases.
“Parents who don’t immunise their children are putting their own kids at risk as well as the children of other people.”
Parents do not need to notify the department once their child is immunised, as their vaccination provider will update the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR).
To find out more about immunisation requirements for family payments and the AIR, head to humanservices.gov.au/ immunisation.