Grants and free tax advice for flood-affected

By Tom Ravlic

March 18, 2022

red cross-flood assistance
Families who lost loved ones during recent major flood events have received charitable donations from the Red Cross. (AAP Image/Chris Wills)

The Red Cross is accepting applications for flood grants that will be paid from the $25.2 million raised during the recent Australia Unites Telethon.

It is estimated by the Australian Red Cross that more than 50,000 households have been impacted by the recent floods and the funds pledged during the telethon will be able to provide $500 for each household for food, clothing, and personal items.

It also has bereavement grants of $20,000 to support seniors whose next-of-kin died as a result of floods, so they can handle immediate needs such as funerals and related expenses if they are experiencing financial hardship.

Garry Page, the acting director of Australian Programs for the Red Cross, said people can apply for the grants from March 18, with the first grants expected to be in the bank accounts of flood victims on March 21.

“Every cent raised at the telethon will go as direct assistance to applicants from up to 50,000 households that have been affected by the floods. No essential operating costs have been deducted from funds raised during the telethon. This is an exception that has been made possible by the generous support from funders,” Page said.

The academic sector is reaching out to help those impacted by the floods, with the University of New South Wales pitching in to assist individuals and businesses in flood-affected areas by providing them with access to free tax advice via its Tax Clinic. It will help provide tax advice to people impacted by the floods, including emergency workers who have had to suspend dealing with their tax affairs to deal with the floods.

“The UNSW Tax Clinic exists to support the financially disadvantaged with tax problems when they cannot afford independent professional advice,” Professor Michael Walpole, the acting director of the Tax Clinic, said. “We recognise that people in flood-affected areas may need our support.”

Registered tax agents supervise the UNSW Business School students who are the ones assisting the clinic’s clients to ensure their tax affairs are kept in order.


Politicising flood assistance, then complicating the receiving of it

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