Members of the Federal Government's green army will be paid as little as $10 an hour as part of Prime Minister Tony Abbott's war on weeds.
Draft regulations for plans to mobilise 15,000 young Australians for the new body reveal that most participants can expect to be paid less than the national minimum wage but still earn more than if they stayed on the dole.
The details of the green army scheme came as unions and the welfare sector attacked the Government over plans to revive compulsory work for the dole.
Assistant Employment Minister Luke Hartsuyker wants local councils and not-for-profit agencies to provide short-term placements for the jobless, such as doing maintenance work at aged-care homes and collecting rubbish.
Australian Council of Trade Unions chief Ged Kearney said reviving work for the dole was "cheap populism" at a time when thousands of jobs had been lost.
The Australian Council of Social Service said work for the dole was ineffective at getting people into jobs.