Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme
Minister for Government Services

Media release: Update on COVID-19 Disaster Payments for NSW

17 July 2021

Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie

Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience
Minister for Regionalisation, Regional Communications and Regional Education

Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC

Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme
Minister for Government Services

Support is available from Services Australia in Greater Sydney and surrounding NSW, with claims for COVID-19 disaster payments opening tomorrow (Sunday 18 July).

These payments will support everyone impacted by today’s further restrictions, particularly the retail and construction industries.

Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience, Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie, said people in Greater Sydney, Blue Mountains, Central Coast, Shellharbour and Wollongong can claim a higher rate of COVID-19 Disaster Payment from tomorrow.

“Eligible people will be able to get $600 per week if they have lost 20 or more hours of work, and $375 per week if they have lost between 8 and less than 20 hours of work, or a full day of work,” Minister McKenzie said.

“From tomorrow, people who meet all other eligibility criteria, but are located outside a Commonwealth declared hotspot can also claim a COVID-19 Disaster Payment.

“This means people anywhere in New South Wales who have been doing it tough as a result of the lockdown in Sydney will be able to access financial support.

“It is important to our Government to protect the livelihoods and wellbeing of the nation as we make our way through and out the other side of this pandemic – and the support available from tomorrow will be sustaining those who through no fault of their own are feeling the full brunt of the restrictions.”

Minister for Government Services, Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC, is strongly encouraging people to claim the COVID-19 Disaster Payment online.

“The quickest and easiest way to claim COVID-19 Disaster Payments for the vast majority of people is online via myGov,” Minister Reynolds said.

“We want to ensure the phone lines are available to help those most in need.

“You can do your part to support affected people in NSW by only calling Services Australia if absolutely necessary. Please don’t call for usual business over the weekend as the phone lines are open specifically to support those in need of emergency assistance who are unable to go online.”

Minister Reynolds explained the claiming process for COVID-19 Disaster Payment will be streamlined from next week.

“People who claim COVID-19 Disaster Payment for any periods from tomorrow onwards will be automatically paid for any future weeks of a lockdown, provided they update Services Australia when their circumstances change,” Minister Reynolds said.

Minister Reynolds also acknowledged the current lockdown situation in Victoria and reminded Victorians there is nothing they need to do right now.

“More information about financial support available to Victorians, and how to claim, will be available on the Services Australia website soon at:,” Minister Reynolds said.

Payments are already flowing to initially declared parts of NSW, with more than 254,000 claims for COVID- 19 Disaster Payment paid to the state since 1 July, totalling more than $120 million.

Page last updated: 17 July 2021