Labor calls for Australians to be paid $300 for getting the jab. Albanese says the incentive will help the economy by avoiding lockdowns.
The Labor government proposes to dedicate up to $6 billion to the project. But, importantly, the cost of the project will be dictated by how many people go for the incentive.
Labor leader, Anthony Albanese said on Monday that the payment would be granted to “every person who is fully vaccinated by 1 December“.
“Vaccinations are a race Australians can no longer afford to lose,” he stated.
“The Morrison government must make vaccines easily accessible to meet their target to vaccinate 80 per cent of adults.
“The faster this is achieved, the faster the recovery as we emerge from the lockdowns that are bleeding hundreds of millions of dollars a day from the nation’s finances.”
Don’t get me wrong, Labor’s $300 incentive for fully vaxxed aussies is GREAT, but from what I can gather, vaccine hesitancy isn’t the biggest issue in our rollout? I’d be interested to see how many people would get vaxxed for $300 who wouldn’t have otherwise #auspol
— Maddy Brown (she/her) (@itsmaddypbrown) August 2, 2021
Federal Minister Simon Birmingham opposed the suggestion, saying the government is not considering a vaccination payment.
“Frankly, it is insulting to the many millions of Australians who have already turned out to get a jab and they have done so because they know that this is the best way to protect their lives, the lives of their loved ones and the lives of the rest of the community“, he said.
“We looked at it and the evidence says it’s unnecessary,” Birmingham added.
Of course, Birmingham’s opposition is tinged with a general criticism of the Australian Labor Party.
“If you look at countries like the UK in Canada who have pushed past the 80% mark in terms of first doses in those countries, right across their adult population, they’ve used some targeted incentives in careful targeted ways to help get people over the line, but not this type of broad-brush scattergun approach – it’s, it’s very reminiscent of old Labor approaches to just splash cash everywhere and hope for the best.”
Many are criticising liberal politicians’ rejection of a vaccination payment.
On Twitter, people find it ironic that liberals call the vaccination payment a waste, while happily giving Harvey Norman’s billionaire owner, Gerry Harvey, $22m in JobKeeper payments last year.
Labor’s vaccine encouragement policy – Give each fully vaccinated person $300.
Liberal’s vaccine encouragement policy – Give Gerry Harvey $300 for each fully vaccinated person.
— Tu Erfbeeass💉💉 (@erfbeeass) August 2, 2021
Currently, Australia has administered 12,393,893 shots.
Of course, many of that number are just first doses.
40 million shots will be needed to fully vaccinate the adult population.
However, if the current weekly vaccination rate remains steady, full vaccination of the adult population will be reached by January 2022.