Mental Health And Cancer In Federal Election Focus
The leaders of Australia's two major political parties will promise extra spending on health initiatives on their third day on the hustings.
The health of Australians is firmly in focus for Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his Labor rival Bill Shorten, five weeks out from the federal election.
On Saturday, Morrison promised the Coalition would spend an extra $42 million on mental health services for young and Indigenous Australians, if it wins the May 18 poll.
That comes as Labor is pledging to spend $8.6 million on a sun protection awareness campaign, in hopes of curbing the number of Australians who experience skin cancer.
The Coalition has remained tight-lipped about where Morrison will formally announce his party's mental health plans, in a bid to avoid protesters or a clash with Labor's plans.
Shorten will make his commitment to a renewed Slip, Slop, Slap campaign in Sydney, where he has been on the hustings since Thursday evening.
Welfare payments will also be in focus on Saturday, after Shorten confirmed Labor plans to raise the rate of Newstart.
Labor had previously committed to reviewing the allowance for people seeking work if it wins the election.
But asked on Friday whether he support in increase in the payment -- a step the social services sector has long cried out for -- Shorten told reporters he thinks that "has to be" done.
"But let's see what happens with the review. We're not holding a review to lower it. We're not holding a review to forget about it."
The PM has maintained he would not change the allowance, noting Australia has "one of the best safety nets" in the world.
"The way you keep that system in place is that you ensure you get more people into work, so the budget that supports those payments is not coming under the stress it otherwise might be," he told reporters.
Newstart for a single person without children is $555.70 a fortnight.
Meanwhile, the Liberal Party's campaign has already hit a hitch.
Two Victorian candidates running in safe Labor seats have stood aside after discovering they are unlikely to be eligible for parliament due to duel citizenship.
A Victorian Liberal spokesman on Friday confirmed that Kate Oski and Vaishali Ghosh had voluntarily withdrawn.
"We thank our outgoing candidates and are in the process of identifying new candidates for Lalor and Wills," they told AAP.