Queenslanders are struggling against the rising cost of living according to a report released today.

The State’s Council of Social Services says the true cost of living is hard to define because the dramatic rise in essential services like water and electricity aren’t being calculated.

But what is clear many Queenslanders are facing hard times.

Rebekah Ison reports.


Bonnie Anderson is a single mother of two.

She’s says without support from her family she’d struggle to get by.

Bonnie Anderson, Mother: “My mum helps out with my child care bills. I live in one of her houses so I get cheap rent so I think if I didn’t have that I’d struggle a lot.”

And she’s not alone.

A report from the Queensland Council of Social Services indicates many Australians fail to meet the cost of basic living.

QCOSS found a two child single parent family with an income of $770 a week would need to earn almost $30 extra to survive.

Karyn Walsh, QCOSS Director: “It’s very clear people are living with very difficult decisions about the basics. Not luxuries not discretionary things.”

QCOSS says the government needs to review low income concessions to ease the rising costs of living.

According to the report cost of essential services like public transport, rent and utilities has increased more than 35 per cent in the last five years.

Community service groups are pushing for higher Centrelink benefits to meet these increases.

Karyn Walsh, QCOSS Director: “Newstart needs to go up and certainly it’s impossible for people to continue living on Newstart and youth allowance.”

Community services say the increased need for help is seen on a daily basis.

Sima Holding, Rock Christian Church, Capalaba: “Since December we’ve increased the number of people that are coming from 20 a week to 60 a week. Last week we had 17 new families come.”

For now though Bonnie Anderson is getting by.

But by the time the next report is released in six months things might be even harder

Rebekah Ison, QUT News.