The Welfare Rights Centre is a community legal centre specialising in Social Security law. The Centre is committed to the proactive provision of information, assistance and advocacy, which changes and enhances the power of people reliant on the Social Security system. The Centre provides free and independent advocacy services to customers of Centrelink. The Centre provides information and advice over the telephone; negotiates with Centrelink on behalf of clients; represents clients at the Social Security Appeals Tribunal and the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. We have an extensive community liaison program; publish papers on Social Security matters to raise issues of concern; and work with other members the National Welfare Rights Network in lobbying for law reform at a national level.
The National Welfare Rights Network (NWRN) is a network of community legal centres throughout Australia which specialise in Social Security law and its administration by Centrelink.
Welfare Rights Centre Inc. strives to alleviate hardship caused by poverty and discrimination. Through it’s work, the Centre strives to challenge societal structures to achieve an inclusive society.
Welfare Rights Centre Inc. is committed to increasing the community’s access to justice by providing a specialist advocacy service in the areas of social security and disability discrimination law; by advocating for fair and just decisions, and challenging unjust laws, institution and community values.
NWRN member organisations, individual Welfare Rights centres and services throughout Australia, aim to reduce poverty, hardship and inequality in Australia by:
* providing casework advice and assistance to individuals to ensure they can exercise their rights, fulfil their obligations, meet their responsibilities and maximise their entitlements under the Australian Social Security system; and
* advocating for the maintenance of a Social Security system that has rights and entitlements, obligations and responsibilities, detailed under and protected by law.
The NWRN advocates that the Social Security system in Australia should be characterised by an uncompromising recognition of the following rights:
* the right of all people in need to an adequate level of income support which is protected by law;
* the right of people to be treated with respect and dignity by Centrelink and those administering the Social Security system;
* the right to accessible information about Social Security rights and entitlements, obligations and responsibilities;
* the right to receive prompt and appropriate service and Social Security payments without delay;
* the right to a free, independent, informal, efficient and fair appeal system;
* the right to an independent complaints system; and
* the right to independent advice and representation.