COVID-19: Resources and information


Last updated: 08 Jul 2020 1:15pm


JobKeeper assistance

Australian Federal Government JobKeeper Payment Scheme – Guidance for Farm Business Applicants

In response to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Federal Government has introduced the JobKeeper Payment Scheme to assist affected businesses.

To determine eligibility, businesses will generally use the basic test where the projected GST turnover for the turnover test period falls short of the current GST turnover for the relevant comparison period.

For some businesses  who are experiencing the combined impact of drought, COVID-19 and in some situations, bushfires, the combined impact of drought, COVID-19 and in some situations, bushfires, a normal comparison period is not appropriate.

To address this issue and assist producers, the ATO has determined alternative tests for some cases where the fall in turnover periods do not have an appropriate relevant comparison period in 2019 for applicants to satisfy the basic test. The ATO ruling allows businesses to compare COVID-19 GST turnover against a recent non-drought period.

In response, NSW DPI has developed three options to assist producers and/or their advisors, determine the non-drought period:

Option 1: Generalised Assessment Period

NSW DPI considers that the 2016-2017 financial year is a suitable period to select for a non-drought period for most of NSW.

Option 2: Regionalised Assessment Period

There are exceptions to Option 1: Generalised Assessment Period. Some areas of the state were experiencing drought during the 2016-2017 financial period. The lookup table provides a regionalised assessment of when each Parish in NSW was in non-drought (extending back to 1 January 2015). To access this information, you will need to know the Parish and County Name of your location.

Option 3: Self Assessment

To tailor the assessment period to your needs, you can access the Seasonal Conditions Information Portal to see how drought has tracked over time for your Parish. You will need to know the Parish and County Name for your location to access this information.

Providing evidence for the Job Seeker Eligibility Assessment

When applying for the JobKeeper Payment Scheme, it is recommended that the following statement is used:

Non drought assessment period selected in accordance with NSW DPI guidelines. 

Need to know your Parish?

To search for your Parish:

  1. Use the interactive map below (wait for the map to load).
  2. Enter your address and note down your Parish, County and Local Land Services region.

For further information on the Combined Drought Indicator and NSW DPIs drought monitoring program visit our website.



Industry information and resources

NSW Farmers information

NSW Farmers have produced guidance to assist primary producers and the agricultural industry navigate the challenges of COVID-19.

Horticulture

APAL: APAL is communicating with the Department of Agriculture and key industry stakeholders on steps in moving forward and adapting to the ongoing COVID-19 situation.

Ausveg: AUSVEG has produced guidance that covers labour, transport and logistics, key farm inputs, meetings and stimulus packages.

Berries Australia: Berries Australia is linked to key working groups at the national and state levels to ensure producer issues are tabled and get information is provided as soon as it comes to hand. View advice from Berries Australia.

Citrus Australia: Citrus Australian has a range of advice for Citrus Growers.

Australian Olive Association: View an update from the Australian Olive Association.

Wine and Grape Industry

Australian Grape and Wine Inc are providing the latest updates for the sector along with useful links and information.

Cropping and grains

Graingrowers: GrainGrowers has developed this information guide to assist growers with general information as the effects of COVID-19 are being felt.

Extensive and intensive livestock

Animal Health Australia: Animal Health Australia has a range of advice to assist producers and animal owners navigate COVID-19.

Australian Veterinary Association

AVA has established a COVID-19 information portal.

Australian Meat Industry Council (AMIC): AMIC is making sure members are as prepared as possible for the potential impacts of Coronavirus on their businesses. View their advice.

Australian Pork Limited: View information from Australian Pork Limited.

Dairy Australia: Read the Dairy Australia Industry update. They have also developed a comprehensive directory of all updates and relevant technical advice.

Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA): MLA are assisting producers to deal with the impacts of COVID-19. View their statement.

Red Meat Advisory Council: The Red Meat Advisory Council (RMAC) have a range of strategies for producers to cope with COVID-19.

WoolProducers Australia: WoolProducers Australia is working with wool industry stakeholders, State farm organisations, and State and Federal Governments to develop guidance and advice on COVID-19 for industry.

Forestry

Australian Forest Products Association: With Australia facing the COVID-19 crisis there is a lot of information out there about what it means for those involved in the forest product industries.

Trade

Export Council of Australia: The Export Council of Australia (ECA) is collecting information and resources to help Australian businesses involved in trade prepare for and mitigate any effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on business.

Telecommunications advice

Many Australian telecommunications providers have made extra support available to help their customers through the challenges of COVID-19.

The Government and major Australian telecommunications companies have agreed on a set of principles to help customers and small businesses experiencing financial hardship due to the impact of COVID-19, with many providers offering a financial hardship policy and increased data allowances at no extra cost.

The Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman has also developed a list of COVID-19 Phone and Internet tips, and is available to help you negotiate resolving an issue with your phone or internet provider.

Mental health resources and information

Mental Health Line: The Mental Health Line is a 24/7 service operating across NSW which is staffed by mental health clinicians. Anyone, including carers or family members, can call the line to be directed to the most appropriate care. The mental health professionals operating the line will assess the urgency of the call and make recommendations for follow-up treatment. Phone: 1800 011 511

Virtual Psychologist: Virtual Psychologist Is a free text based service to provide mental health support. Text 0488 807 266 to access the service

Lifeline: Anyone across Australia experiencing a personal crisis or thinking about suicide can contact Lifeline's confidential crisis support service. Trained volunteers are available 24/7 to listen and provide support and referrals. Phone: 13 11 14

Beyond Blue: The Beyondblue Support Service offers 24/7 confidential telephone support, counselling and referrals from trained mental health professionals. All calls and chats are one-on-one and are completely confidential. Phone: 1300 224 636

Carer Line: Carer Line provides support, information, counselling and referral service is available from 8.30am to 4.30pm weekdays. The service is staffed by experienced carer support officers and is available to carers, service providers and community members. Phone: 1800 242 636

Parentline: Parentline is a 24/7 confidential telephone counselling and support service for parents and carers of children. Parentline aims to nurture and support positive, caring relationships between parents, children, teenagers and other people important to the wellbeing of families. Phone: 1300 1300 52 (NSW)

The Alcohol Drug Information Service: The Alcohol Drug Information Service is a confidential and anonymous information, counselling, advice and referral service. Available 24/7, the service provides information such as safer injecting advice, parent advice and information on detoxification.  Phone: 1800 422 599

National Sexual Assault, Family & Domestic Violence Counselling Line: The National Sexual Assault, Family & Domestic Violence Counselling Line is 1800 737 732 or visit 1800respect.org.au.

Family Law Hotline: Family Law Hotline provides a free telephone service for people experiencing family and relationship problems. Available Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm. Phone: 1800 050 321

Head to Health: The Head to Health website aims to provide unbiased, trusted and up to date information, online programs and resources, to empower and enable people to make informed choices regarding their mental health concerns.

Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health: Listen to a podcast episode about COVID-19 and your mental health.

Read the blog ‘It’s grief and I am feeling it too’

Read the factsheet ‘Let’s talk building social connections’ (PDF, 373 KB)

Read the factsheet ‘Let’s talk coping with uncertainty’ (PDF, 384 KB)

Read the factsheet ‘Let’s talk rural adversity’ (PDF, 385 KB)

Find further wellbeing resources.