Early this month the Federal government announced a royal commission into robo-debt, the automated issuance of debt notices to welfare recipients, which adversely affected the lives of over 400 thousand people.
Department of Human Services (now Services Australia) deployed technology in 2015 that surveils, monitors and punishes people on income support.
A recent class action found Services Australia had unlawfully claimed nearly $2 billion in debts from 433,000 people, many of whom owed no debt.
Former prime minister Scott Morrison’s role in the scheme could be investigated as he announced the program as a savings measure in the 2015 budget when he was social services minister. He became treasurer later that year.
Victims of the robodebt welfare repayment scheme could receive further compensation after the federal government unveiled details of its royal commission to examine the actions of bureaucrats who implemented the program and brushed off warnings over its legality.
Fulfilling an election promise, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has appointed former Queensland Supreme Court chief justice Catherine Holmes to head the $30 million investigation of the failed scheme.
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