How Katy Gallagher voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should limit the availability of government social security payments

Division Katy Gallagher Supporters vote Division outcome

21st Jun 2017, 6:23 PM – Senate Documents - Social Security Act - Disability support pension and substance abuse

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The majority voted in favour of a motion introduced by Labor Senator Doug Cameron (NSW). The motion was to disallow the Social Security (Tables for the Assessment of Work-related Impairment for Disability Support Pension) Amendment Determination 2017. This means that that Determination no longer has any legal force.

What did this Determination do?

This Determination would have meant that, from 1 July 2017, people wouldn't be able to receive a disability support pension on the basis of substance abuse alone. Learn more in the Determination's explanatory statement.

Motion text

That the Social Security (Tables for the Assessment of Work-related Impairment for Disability Support Pension) Amendment Determination 2017, made under the Social Security Act 1991, be disallowed [F2017L00659].

Yes No Passed by a small majority

22nd Mar 2017, 12:04 AM – Senate Social Services Legislation Amendment Bill 2017 - Third Reading - Pass the bill

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The majority voted to pass the bill in the Senate. In parliamentary jargon they voted to read the bill for a third time.

The bill will now go to the House of Representatives, where our Members of Parliament (MPs) will decide if they also agree with the bill and want it to become law.

What is the bill?

The purpose of this bill is to make savings for the government in the social services sector (social welfare etc).

According to the bill's homepage, it was introduced to:

  • pause for three years the indexation of various income thresholds that apply to certain social security benefits and allowances and the income test free area for parenting payment single
  • extend the ordinary waiting period to youth allowance (other) and parenting payment
  • include additional evidentiary requirements for the ‘severe financial hardship’ exemption from the ordinary waiting period
  • remove the ability for claimants to serve the ordinary waiting period concurrently with other waiting periods
  • enable automation of the regular income stream review process; and
  • maintain the standard family tax benefit (FTB) child rates for two years, from 1 July 2017, in the maximum and base rate of FTB Part A and the maximum rate of FTB Part B.
No Yes Passed by a small majority

1st Dec 2016, 4:10 PM – Senate Motions - Disability Support Pension - Support people with disability

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The majority voted in favour of a motion introduced by West Australian Senator Rachel Siewert (Greens), which means it succeeded.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes that people with disability face many barriers to finding and maintaining secure work and are poorly represented in the workforce;

(b) acknowledges that the report of the Australian Council of Social Service, Poverty in Australia 2016, reported 510,900 adults with a disability were living below the poverty line in 2013-14, not including people with disability with core activity limitation, and that, in 2014, 36.2 per cent of Disability Support Pension recipients were living below the poverty line; and

(c) calls on the Government to abandon its attacks on supports for people with disability, including moving people with disability off the Disability Support Pension and making access to the Mobility Allowance tougher.

absent No Passed by a small majority

How "voted very strongly against" is worked out

The MP's votes count towards a weighted average where the most important votes get 50 points, less important votes get 10 points, and less important votes for which the MP was absent get 2 points. In important votes the MP gets awarded the full 50 points for voting the same as the policy, 0 points for voting against the policy, and 25 points for not voting. In less important votes, the MP gets 10 points for voting with the policy, 0 points for voting against, and 1 (out of 2) if absent.

Then, the number gets converted to a simple english language phrase based on the range of values it's within.

No of votes Points Out of
Most important votes (50 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
MP absent 0 0 0
Less important votes (10 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 2 0 20
Less important absentees (2 points)      
MP absent* 1 1 2
Total: 1 22

*Pressure of other work means MPs or Senators are not always available to vote – it does not always indicate they have abstained. Therefore, being absent on a less important vote makes a disproportionatly small difference.

Agreement score = MP's points / total points = 1 / 22 = 4.5%.

And then