Raising government income support payments would contribute millions of dollars to the Border's economy, according to Australian Council of Social Services.
ACOSS senior adviser on social security Charmaine Crowe said if the single rate of Newstart, Youth Allowance and related payments rose by $75 a week, "every single cent would be going into the local community".
"Deloitte Access Economics shows that if these payments were increased, it would inject an additional $9 million in Albury, $6 million in Wodonga, just into the economy," Ms Crowe said.
She joined East Albury sole parent Emily Lightfoot and Country Women's Association national president Tanya Cameron in QEII Square on Tuesday where the CWA pledged its support.
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Ms Lightfoot, a Newstart recipient, said an imminent house move would see rent taking nearly 60 per cent of her payment and she expected soon to need more help from food banks and charity.
"In this campaign we're not asking for more than what people actually need as the absolute bare minimum and we don't want to be perceived as making frivolous requests," she said.
"It's all-consuming, you think about it from when you get up in the morning to when you go to bed at night."
Her eight-year-old son knew not to ask for too much for Christmas and birthdays.
"He never writes a list for Santa and if I say no, he just accepts it because he knows what the situation is and he knows that buying food is more important than expensive toys or outings," Ms Lightfoot said.
"It's difficult, he's had to grow up and mature very quickly; that's what poverty does, it robs children of their childhood."
Ms Crowe said Newstart hadn't risen in real terms for 25 years but living costs for people on low incomes had increased dramatically.
"You cannot live on $40 a day," she said.
"If you're an unemployed person in regional Australia, to find paid work you need a car, you need internet access.
"This is about making Newstart work so people can get through tough times and get those paid work opportunities."
Mrs Cameron said an increase would see more money go into communities presently affected by drought.
"The need is there and this proposal would actually help alleviate that as well as support people who are on Newstart," she said.
"Whether they are young or old, it's actually inhibiting their ability to find work."
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