Former federal Labor MP Gary Johns has proposed compulsory contraception for women on welfare benefits.

In his new book, ‘No Contraception, No Dole’, Mr Johns argues for compulsory contraception for all women on welfare.

“If someone is on an unemployment benefit, they should be looking for work not starting a family. If someone’s on a parenting payment, perhaps because they are a single mum, they should be looking after existing children not having more children. And if someone’s on Youth Allowance, they’re a very young woman, they should be studying not starting a family,” Mr Johns told A Current Affair.

“When she comes off the benefit – whether she has a job or a new relationship, new support – she comes off the contraception,” he said.

Social commentator and feminist Jane Caro is appalled by Mr Johns’ proposal.

“We let them starve? We let them beg on the street, do we? How does this work? It’s the most appalling idea,” Ms Caro told A Current Affair.

“I’m not prepared to say that every mother on welfare is doing a bad job, or will necessarily bring up a child who themselves will end up on welfare. That may well happen and it may be a greater risk, but that doesn’t mean we judge everyone the same.”

Share your thoughts below.

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  • I disagree with Gary Johns,but he’s on the right track just wrong words. Both Men & Woman should be smart enough to use common sense! If you cannot afford to have children it’s simple don’t have them. Both men and woman should use protection if you can’t use pill or others due to complications or negative side affects etc there are many other ways of protecting yourselves that goes for men to. There have been a rise in welfare due to having unwanted kids or just lazy as for the ones who have actual excuses fair enough but to the ones who don’t stop being a dole bludge! Think of the ones who have to go to work whilst being pregnant and paying tax to the people who just don’t want to! Common sense we are adults here be prepared before or making or doing anything there is no such thing as it was in the moment!


  • As long as men need to meet the same criteria.


  • mr,garry johns has gone on my list of men who i pesonally think should have be born deformed enough that they could have no trouble becoming pregnant and giving birth,raising a child on the pittance they call a pension,and being single because some CAD wouldn’t face up to his responsibilities,or perchance it was a mistake that they couldn’t destroy,and after he has walked in those shoes,i wonder if his response would be the same,he of course cannot respond to that as the oppertunity will not arise in his lifetime and anybody can say with conviction when they know this challenge won’t apply to them”oh course i would”,but talk about something you at least can apply to yourself and make a reliable comment about instead of the dipstick that told you to take that stance,have a nice day mr garry johns.


  • What the hell? What is wrong with people? Why would ANYone think they had the right to tell someone that unless they’re sterilised, they cannot eat??? How utterly atrocious! Grow up fool, it isn’t the 1850’s anymore, women have rights!


  • Wow, now I’ve heard everything! What about women that can’t use the pill etc due to nasty side effects. Or for those who have it fail? And what about the men? They can just impregnate who they want if they’re on welfare? Silly. Just one man’s opinion on what women should be doing. What’s the right age for one might not be for another. He should go live his own life and not judge what other people are doing.


  • hear hear – you want to pop out kids, you bloody pay for them…. I had to! we had one car, lived frugally and got by. I don’t want to pay for spongers!


  • Sheesh. Where to start with this? Is contraception really just for the woman on benefits as last time I checked it took a man to be involved too – where’s his compulsory contraception? What about those women who medically can’t be on the contraception pill? I’m guessing this “former” federal minister doesn’t have any daughters. Gosh, I hope he doesn’t!


  • I can see the point with a few comments on here.
    What about ladies who have a medical condition and told they can never have children.? I know of 2 who were told that. One pregnancy was classe as high risk with a strong possibility of miscarriage.
    She did have a part time job but due to the risks involved with it as well she was told by the Dr. to resign. She plans to get another job later when the baby is older. The Dad doesn’t work and is now on disability benefit and has to take dr. ordered medication so if she claimed support she was advised she would be lucky to get $5.00 a fortnight


  • To make this work are you going to put a pill in everyones mouth everyday, you do relise no contraception is 100% either.
    Have some common sense you cannot control what women do nor should we be told when to have children.


  • I don’t think that forced contraception is a solution. There must be other ways.


  • I agree with a lot that mum 71495 has to say.




  • I think he needs to choose his words carefully.


  • He does have a point but I don’t think his idea is the way to go


  • The proposal seems extremely harsh as well as impossible to enforce. It also classifies people unfairly – can’t our politicians deal with real issues that actually need addressing?


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