Showing posts with label jobs. Show all posts
Showing posts with label jobs. Show all posts

Friday, 22 May 2020

Australian casual employees regularly working full-time hours win paid leave, carer & compassionate leave in Federal Court ruling - Morrison Government threatens to change law to strip new rights away

"All members of the Court have also found that Mr Rossato was not a casual FTM under the 2012 EA, noting that the circumstances of his employment could not be distinguished in a material way from those of Skene. All members of the Court have found that WorkPac is not entitled to restitution of the casual loading which it claimed was included in the hourly rate it had paid to Mr Rossato. The members of the Court have found that there was no relevant mistake, and no failure of consideration such as would support restitutionary relief. All members of the Court have found that WorkPac is not entitled to bring into account the payments of remuneration that it had made to Mr Rossato on the basis that he was a casual employee. That is because the purposes of the payments of remuneration did not have a close correlation to the entitlements that Mr Rossato seeks. All members of the Court have found that WorkPac’s reliance on reg 2.03A of the Fair Work Regulations 2009 (Cth) was misplaced. By subregulation (d), the regulation can apply only when the person makes a claim to be paid an amount in lieu of one or more of the relevant NES entitlements. That is not this case as Mr Rossato seeks payment of the NES entitlements, not payments in lieu." [Workpac v Rossato, May 2020]

Yahoo! Finance, 21 May 2020:

Casual employees working full-time hours will be entitled to paid leave, setting back employers around $8 billion in back-pay claims, after a landmark ruling by the Federal Court on Wednesday.

The decision means regular, ongoing casuals will be able to access paid annual leave, paid personal/carer’s leave and paid compassionate leave, and employers cannot claim that 25 per cent pay loadings offset those entitlements.

The ruling in Workpac v Rossato has effectively pulled the pin on the ‘permanent casual’ work model, and means any regular work that is permanent in nature is not genuinely casual, and therefore attracts the same entitlements as permanent staff.

This is a fantastic decision that puts an end to the ‘permanent casual’ rort that has become a scourge in the coal mining industry and across the workforce,” the Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union national president Tony Maher said.

It’s a decision that passes the pub test on what it means to be a casual and is consistent with community expectations that casual work is irregular and intermittent.”

Maher called on employers to “stop the nonsense”, and start treating casual employees on permanent hours as if they were permanent.

When a job is full-time, regular and on-going, it is permanent and deserves the security and entitlements that come with permanent work,” Maher said.

Our union has worked hard to clarify the law with this decision and we will now be fighting to restore rights and lost pay for casual labour hire workers across the coal mining industry who have been illegally ripped off.”…….

Industrial relations minister Christian Porter said the decision would have “immediate practical implications for the bottom line of many Australians businesses at a time when so many have taken a huge hit from the Covid-19 pandemic”.

In fact, employers estimate between 1.6 and 2.2 million casuals will be affected, with a back-pay bill of around $8 billion looming.

Porter also flagged a potential appeal….

"Given the potential for this decision to further weaken the economy at a time when so many Australians have lost their jobs, it may also be necessary to consider legislative options."

Tuesday, 19 May 2020

How will up to 7.2 million Australians respond to Scott Morrison's willingness to abandon them in the worst global recession since the Great Depression

"Fiscal measures will need to be scaled up if the stoppages to economic activity are persistent, or the pickup in activity as restrictions are lifted is too weak."  [IMF WORLD ECONOMIC OUTLOOK: THE GREAT LOCKDOWN, April 2020] 

Brisbane Times, 15 May 2020:

Something has changed in the Liberal Party since John Howard was prime minister. Key business lobbies now have such a grip they can frogmarch the government towards political suicide.

It is only weeks since a million Australians lost their jobs by government decree to protect us all from a health crisis. Most are yet to receive their first benefits, but the government has said the guiding principles on the way out will be self-reliance and personal responsibility.

The Prime Minister and the Treasurer have moved in recent weeks to flag that the JobSeeker and JobKeeper programs are a short-term aberration and will be returning to their traditional small-government, competitive-individualism philosophy.

‘‘Open markets will be central ... not government,’’ declared the Treasurer on Tuesday. ‘‘The values and principles that have guided us in the past ... encouraging personal responsibility, maximising personal choice, rewarding effort and risk-taking’’ will be central.

It is hard to imagine a more tone-deaf piece of communication to the hundreds of thousands of Australians who are now gripped by sleepless nights about where their next job is going to come from and whether they will lose their houses.

Social movement research has found that you only need 2.5 per cent of people to be in a political movement for it to be large enough to drive major political and social reform. That is enough for everyone to have friends and family involved and to feel personally connected to the issue.

Almost every Australian will have someone they love who has lost a job in the past six weeks. Telling people they are on their own has to be pretty much at the top of the "what not to do list" in the political leadership manual. Yet Scott Morrison is not an idiot or an ideologue, so why is he doing it?

Even if the government was privately planning this approach, you wouldn’t expect the Prime Minister to say it publicly. The announcements suggest he is having to quell his own political storm and there is a pile-on going on behind the scenes. It is the wrong message for most Australians, but it is the right message for those who dictate his grip on power.

Some of it will be the same Coalition ideologues cum powerbrokers who are worried the pandemic response is a symbolic loss. These tribal warriors are not going to let the fact the country is in the grip of an unfolding catastrophe distract them from the red team-blue team contest.

However, they are not the only force in play. Leaders of our largest businesses are embracing the maxim "Don’t waste a good crisis". They are circling the carcass of the not-yet-cold COVID economy, and seeking to take the opportunity to drive through some long-sought-after tax cuts and industrial relations reform.....

One has to wonder how Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Treasurer Josh Frydenberg came to believe that the 1. 7 million people expected to be unemployed by September 2020 will fare well going into the worst recession since the Great Depression where the unemployment rate is predicted to be 13 per cent for starters. 

Or why he believes the up to 5.5 million workers, hanging onto insecure jobs which are only guaranteed for as long as businesses are receiving government wage subsidies for their workers, will all keep those jobs when the subsidy ends on 27 September 2020.

This is the changed reality that the Liberal & National parties must face:

The Sydney Morning Herald, 14 May 2020

If Scott Morrison continues down this track, what will Christmas look like?

Monday, 18 May 2020

Unemployment in Australia in March to May 2020

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics Labor Force, Australia, April 2020, there were 832,500 unemployed persons at the end of April based on original data, which resulted in an unemployment rate of 6.3%.

That was a rise of 63,800 unemployed persons since the end of March 2020.

A number which could have been much higher if it were not that those registered to receive JobKeeper subsidised wage payments are considered employed - even those with no active job to go to.

On 14 May 2020 the Prime Minister announced a seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 6.2% and the Treasurer stated that 594,000 people had lost their jobs since COVID-19 public health restrictions began to affect businesses.

However, both Morrison and Frydenberg fail to point out that those 594,000 newly unemployed are in addition to the est. 238,500 already unemployed persons‬

Even with JobKeeper payments now keeping unemployment figures down by an est. 3.3 to 5.5 million people Treasury expects that the unemployment rate will rise to around 10% by end of June 2020.

According to a Senate estimates hearing on 30 April 2020, an est. 400,000 more people are expected to lose their jobs by September, at which time the unemployment rate is predicted to be around 13%.

September is of course the month indicated by Morrison as the period in which he intends to start rolling back enhanced unemployment benefits - a month in which the Dept. of Social Services expects 1.7 million people to be receiving the Jobseeker payment.

According to the Morrison Government it expects to have returned 850,000 people to employment by the time all the public health restrictions have been lifted.

If in around four months time as many as 7.2 million Australians are expected to be either unemployed or in uncertain employment because their jobs depend on government subsidied wages, one wonders why the Morrison Government is boasting of so low a figure - less than 12% of that 7.2 million. 

Monday, 11 May 2020

From an Australian prime minister who has never taken a paycut for the last thirteen years comes this callous move....

Prime Minister & Liberal MP for Cook Scott John Morrison (pictured left) is on a reputed annual salary in excess of $549,229 - plus free, staffed accommodation & other perks. 

He who has been in a top percentile income category for at least the last 13 years, has decided it is time to renew his personal, prosperity doctrine-driven, war on the poor and vulnerable.

By 24 September 2020 approximately 1.75 million Australians between the ages of 15 to 64 years will be reduced to living on between $18 to $40 a day if single or $72 a day if a couple.

The Sydney Morning Herald, 8 May 2020:

Hundreds of thousands of unemployed Australians face a huge cut in their incomes just before Christmas as the Morrison government prepares to wind back income support despite warnings from the Reserve Bank the economy will not return to its pre-coronavirus size until 2022. 

Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Friday stood by the government's plans to phase out the coronavirus supplement for JobSeeker recipients and the JobKeeper program from mid-September, saying they came at a significant cost that would have to be borne by future generations.

The Reserve Bank of Australia, releasing its first major economic forecasts since the advent of the coronavirus pandemic, expects unemployment to reach 10 per cent in the June quarter and recede only slightly to 9 per cent by the end of the year. 

It forecast the jobless rate, which was at 5.2 per cent in March, to still be at 6.5 per cent by the middle of 2022, saying unemployment will not fall quickly....

Sunday, 19 April 2020

What Morrison Government's recent changes to industrial relations law may mean for workers

On Thurday 16 April 2020 Australian Attorney-General, Minister for Industrial Relations and Liberal MP for Pearce Christian Porter announced changes to the Fair Work Regulations in relation to the negotiation of workplace agreements. 

According to Fair Work Australia the new regulations are "in place initially for 6 months" and are allegedly meant to assist businesses to remain solvent during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

However, workers are likely to be severely disadvantaged because any changes to working conditions or rates of pay made under these new rules are permanent and can only be altered during the next formal application to vary the enterprise agreement - which can be up to four years away.

Tuesday, 17 September 2019

How long have charity fraudsters been recruiting 'scammers' using Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Government's Jobactive program?

The Guardian, 15 September 2019:

Anonymous, 32, South Australia

My strange experience with a Jobactive provider happened back in November 2015. It was a week of pure, concentrated weirdness.
The provider found me a job with a charity. They handled everything. My case manager even took the picture for the photo ID.
There was a man who handled what limited training there was by phone. The day after, I had a trial shift. I had to collect money door-to-door with no information about what the charity actually did, who ran it or what the money we were raising was for – only that it was for children in the Philippines.
The leaflets they gave us to hand out were about cancer, copied and pasted from Wikipedia, even though the charity was supposedly about education. When I spoke to people I couldn’t even answer basic questions. And people were still generous. A blind man gave me $20. It was absurd and awful.
When I asked my point of contact questions, he grew frustrated and aggressive with me. He told me to look on the website but it was just pictures of kids with vague descriptions; no programs, no initiatives. It’s been taken down since, but the mission statement was just a copy of the tax definition of a charity.
I looked up as much as I could about the company. I found the names associated with it had run similar charities that had been exposed as frauds by the ABC. These names weren’t on the website or any training materials. [This charity] didn’t have anything a normal charity had.
I didn’t know what to do, so I reported this to the ACCC and even made a police report. When I told my caseworker, they tried to make me keep doing the job. They told me they’d had their office look it up and that the charity was properly registered, but anyone can register for a business name. I read charities have a year before they’re audited.
When my questions about how the collected money was spent still weren’t answered, the case manager called my point of contact. That’s when they agreed that something wasn’t right and that I didn’t have to do it any more. They joked nervously about ending up on A Current Affair.
A few weeks later I had another appointment and my case manager casually mentioned that another client was still collecting money for [the charity]. She knew they were shonky and still nothing had been done.

Wednesday, 24 July 2019

State of Play 2019: the Australian workplace

Financial Review, 17 July 2019:

The head of a large mortgage brokering company is facing court for allegedly paying his Filipino nanny just $2 an hour for working more than 100 hours a week.

The Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) has accused Tony Lam, managing director of Award Mortage Solutions, of underpaying the worker $155,178 for 12 months of domestic and caring work at his luxury penthouse apartment in Sydney.

The Federal Court action is set to be a significant test of whether nannies and domestic workers are covered by modern awards, which include overtime and penalty rates for morning, evening and weekend work.

The "scale of the alleged underpayments and the unreasonable work hours are concerning", said ombudsman Sandra Parker.

We allege the worker in this case was vulnerable to exploitation given she was new to Australia, resided with Mr Lam and his family and did not know what her workplace rights were," she said......

ABC News, 18 July 2019:

An Adelaide construction site supervisor who doused an apprentice in flammable liquid and set his clothes on fire has pleaded guilty to breaching the Work Health and Safety Act.

Key points:
Tad-Mar Electrical supervisors Luke Daniel Chenoweth and Jeffrey Mark Rowe are being prosecuted by SafeWork SA
The tribunal was told the victim could have suffered second-degree burns
Chenoweth will be sentenced at a later date, Rowe was fined $12,000
Tad-Mar Electrical employee Luke Daniel Chenoweth and fellow supervisor Jeffrey Mark Rowe were prosecuted by SafeWork SA over the incident at a worksite in Woodville in April 2017.

Prosecutor Laura Willows told the South Australian Employment Tribunal (SAET) that Chenoweth squirted flammable liquid onto the boot of a 19-year-old apprentice — who the ABC has chosen not to name.

"He let the flames on his boot go out and he didn't say anything, he just wanted to get away from Chenoweth," she said.

"Chenoweth followed him and squirted some more liquid onto the crotch area of the complainant.

"It was at this point the complainant became particularly scared … so he ran away."

However, Ms Willows said the two supervisors followed the apprentice and both squirted more lighter fluid on the young worker's shirt and ignited it.

"[The apprentice] felt intense heat instantly and he was pulling his shirt away from his skin and waving his arms to try and put the flames out," she said.

"He could smell burnt hair and he was worried he had been seriously burnt."

'The apprentice could have suffered second-degree burns'

The court heard the apprentice would have suffered second-degree burns if his shirt was left on his body for another 20 seconds.

Ms Willows told the court the apprentice was subjected to ongoing bullying in the lead-up to the incident.

She said the apprentice had previously been tied to a ladder with duct tape, had his arms and face covered with silicon and permanent marker and had been locked in a shipping container.

The court heard Chenoweth had also failed to ensure that the apprentice received medical assessment for an electric shock and subjected him to frequent verbal abuse.

"The defendant was in a position of authority on the building site being supervisor and the victim was an apprentice," Ms Willows said.....

George Colombaris
Photograph, The Age, 18 July 2019
Australian Government Fairwork Ombudsman's Court-Enforceable Undertaking with the MADE Establishment Pty Ltd group of companies, excerpt from public apology template, July 2019:

In early 2017, following a change in ownership and management, MAdE Establishment conducted a review of its records and identified circumstances where it had failed to correctly pay many of its employees. MAdE Establishment self-reported this to the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) which subsequently commenced an investigation into Jimmy Grants and the MAdE Establishment group of companies, being the Hellenic Republic, Press Club and Gazi restaurants.

Since first identifying the underpayment issues, the MAdE Establishment group has back-paid 515 current or former employees $7.83m.This amount comprised underpayments for the admitted contraventions listed below. In some cases, workers were incorrectly classified. Record-keeping laws relating to time records for some annualised salary employees were not adhered to, contributing to underpayments.

The FWO also found underpayments of about $16,000 for 9 employees at two Jimmy Grants stores. Jimmy Grants (Emporium) and Jimmy Grants (Fitzroy) incorrectly classified some workers and for some employees the wrong award was applied, resulting in underpayments of base rates for ordinary hours and a range of penalty rates......

George Calombaris, founding shareholder (shareholder 2008-current, director 2008-2018)

Radek Sali, Director of MAdE Establishment (director 20 December, 2016-current, shareholder 20 December, 2016 - current)

Adam Gregory, Director of MAdE Establishment (director 26 April, 2017-current, shareholder 28 August, 2017 -current)

Wednesday, 17 July 2019

So much for Liberal-Nationals boasts concerning regional jobs growth in 2019

After Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison abandoned the Coalition's proposed National Energy Guarantee which would allegedly reduce polluting emissions and lower electricity retail costs, the energy sector remains in disarray.

One hundred and sixty-five jobs are at risk across regional News South Wales as Essential Energywhose operational footprint covers 95 percent of the state apparently considers downsizing employee numbers as a cost-cutting measure is the best way to gain the Morrison Government’s approval.

In all probability hoping that this move will appease Morrison and he will then decide to forget his promise to force all energy companies to lower their prices.

Sadly, this is just the sort of short-sighted approach to cost cutting which ‘The Liar From The Shire’ would approve.

Though how downsizing staff leads to better customer service under The Energy Charter I am at a loss to understand.

The Daily Examiner, 4 July 2019, p.1:

Methods used to determine who stays in a job at Essential Energy have been likened to the battle for survival in sci-fi film Hunger Games.

The Electrical Trade Union claims workers will be pitted against each other to save their own job and asserts that the company has told workers Grafton will be one of the hardest hit in a plan to slash 165 jobs across regional NSW.

The Daily Examiner was told of workers being asked to write letters to state why they should keep their job.

ETU secretary Justin Paige slammed the announcement of cuts, saying the use of forced redundancies along with a “Hunger Games” style competition between workers was causing unnecessary hardship.

Workers have been given less than a week to respond to the plan, with the first staff to be made forcibly redundant as early as July 10, but we are examining every legal and industrial avenue available to stop them,” Mr Paige said.

The worst part is many of these cuts will be undertaken through what management have called a ‘merit selection process’, which will essentially pit workers against each other to save their own job.

Clarence MP Chris Gulaptis and Deputy Premier John Barilaro poured scorn on the proposed job losses…...

The Daily Examiner, 5 July 2019, p.3:

The ALP has accused Nationals MPs of hypocrisy over their response to Essential Energy sacking 182 employees.

Member for Lismore Janelle Saffin said it was the height of hypocrisy for Nationals MPs like John Barilaro and Chris Gulaptis to claim they are fighting against Essential Energy’s regional job cuts.

Ms Saffin said the Nationals allowed Essential Energy to be corporatised so they could bleat all they like but lost their say in the matter when they agreed to the sell-off.

The Nationals’ excuse was that a Restart fund would be set up from the proceeds of the sale and that regional and rural NSW would get 30 per cent of the proceeds annually,” Ms Saffin said. “They never even delivered and failed regional NSW. The Auditor General has showed year after year since 2011 that Restart has not met the Nationals’ 30 per cent target – it was 17 per cent last year.

The Nationals lost three seats at the recent State election, which is why John Barilaro is now posturing that his hapless party is suddenly independent of the Liberals.”

Ms Saffin said she was saddened to hear of Essential Energy’s plan to sack more workers as it was a cruel blow to them and their families, and would make it harder on remaining workers maintaining or upgrading infrastructure.

Essential Energy, which operates electricity poles and wires across 95 per cent of the state, has gutted more than 2000 jobs from their ranks since 2015,” Ms Saffin said.

It is hard enough to get permanent roles in the regions and while jobs have grown in the city it has been slow here…..

The Daily Examiner, 8 July 2019, p.3:

Essential Energy has hit the pause button on its moves to cut 182 job across Northern NSW after a Fair Work Commission meeting which called for the company to provide further information to its workers.

On Friday power industry unions reached an in-principle agreement with Essential Energy in the Fair Work Commission that paused planned job cuts until additional consultation took place.
The agreement means no jobs will be lost before mid-August, with unions given an opportunity to propose alternative cost saving measures and initiatives that could avert the need for redundancies.
Essential Energy committed to distributing information to all employees by July 19 that includes: the justification for role reductions, the specific impacts of cuts on remaining team members, and details of the tasks or functions that will cease to be performed.
Essential Energy also committed to consider alternative savings measures before redundancy decisions.
Electrical Trades Union secretary Justin Page welcomed the outcome, saying it was vital workers could identify alternatives to regional job cuts.
This is a tough time for Essential Energy workers, their families and colleagues,” Mr Page said.
After four years of deep staffing cuts at Essential Energy – which has not only devastated those workers directly impacted, but has had profound impacts on service delivery and regional communities – today’s reprieve is extremely welcome, but is just the start…..

Friday, 17 May 2019

Australian economy has grown weaker and workers paypackets leaner under the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Government

ABC News, 11 May 2019:

Australia's "strong economy" has been the Coalition's mantra throughout the election campaign.

Earlier this month, the Liberal Party created a meme of a smiling Scott Morrison armed with a lightsaber and dressed as a Jedi alongside the slogan: "The economy is strong with this one."

In Treasurer Josh Frydenberg's Budget speech, the phrase "strong economy" featured 14 times.

And Labor, loathe to campaign on what it sees as the Coalition's territory, has barely challenged this proposition.

Yet the evidence suggests the claim is more rhetoric than reality.

On just about any measure, the economy is not strong — and any enduring pretensions that it is have been undermined by no less an authority than the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA).

Its latest monetary policy statement has revised down economic growth for this financial year to just 1.7 per cent — more than half a percentage point below its previous forecast.

That contradicts Treasury forecasts in the Budget, which are barely a month old and were reaffirmed by Treasury even more recently in the pre-election economic and fiscal outlook.

Wages growth, despite a recent small pick-up, has been weaker during the past six years than at any time since World War II.

Home values and household wealth have plummeted amid one of the biggest property slumps in Australia's history.

The inflation rate is at a historic low of just 1.3 per cent and has languished below the Reserve Bank's target range of 2 to 3 per cent for more than three years.

Although employment growth has been reasonably strong, driven by the public sector and community services, key sectors that drive the economy are shrinking.

Manufacturing, construction and retail trade have all shed tens of thousands of jobs over the past year — the building industry layoffs are a product of a massive slump in dwelling investment, which the RBA reckons will continue for years.

Some better headline data mask gloomier realities

Only high rates of immigration have stopped Australia lapsing into a formal recession.

The continued expansion — now in its 28th year, the longest period without a recession in recent world history — disguises a "per capita" recession that is driving down living standards.

Similarly, an unemployment rate mired at 5 per cent, which is not high by the standards of recent decades, disguises the true weakness of the labour market.
More than 13 per cent of the workforce is underutilised — either unable to secure work at all or the hours they need — and a disproportionate share of the jobs growth in recent times has been poor quality: casual and contract jobs in relatively low-wage, low-productivity sectors.

The Reserve Bank is betting on the unemployment rate staying where it is, but others are less optimistic.

Westpac's Bill Evans, one of the most long-standing and respected market economists, predicts that developments in the labour market over the next three months will disappoint the RBA with a "deterioration of the labour market" over the coming six months and "continued weak inflation".

This downturn in the economy is largely homegrown — the product of weak wages growth and the unwinding of an unsustainable property boom that left households saddled with enormous debts.

If there's also an external shock, perhaps from a trade war sparked by Donald Trump's tariffs on our largest trading partner China, it will open up the possibility of a double-whammy.

Yogi Berra, the legendary US baseball star and coach, famously observed that "it's tough making predictions, especially about the future", and it's a maxim that's often born[e] out in economic forecasting.

But you don't need a crystal ball to realise that whoever forms government after the federal election will inherit a sluggish economy, not a strong one.

ABC News, 12 May 2019:

The Reserve Bank's new line in the sand gets its first big test with the latest reading from the jobs market this week.

The new line, as set down in the RBA's latest Statement on Monetary Policy (SOMP), can be roughly defined as the unemployment rate holding at 5 per cent through 2019 and 2020 before drifting lower.

The persistent head-winds of low inflation has seemingly blurred, if not blown away, the RBA's previous markers — parallel lines which were intended to corral inflation between 2 to 3 per cent for as far as the eye can see, or an economist can forecast.

Governor Philip Lowe made it clear a further improvement in the labour market was needed to get the economy out its rut and back in the groove, growing at its full potential.

No back-tracking on this one for the RBA. Lower unemployment and underemployment — where workers are searching for more hours to make ends meet — will soak up the spare capacity sloshing around the economy, inflation gets back to where the RBA wants it and GDP grows at its long term trend, or better.

That's still a long way off, even using the RBA's recently updated and far from pessimistic forecasts......

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, over the twelve months to the March quarter 2019 the living costs for self–funded retiree households fell by -0.2%, while the living costs for age pensioner households and other government transfer recipient households rose by 0.3% and 0.2% respectively. Employed households living costs remained unchanged over the same time period at 0.1% above CPI.

It should be noted that penalty rates for retail workers will be further reduced by 15% of the base wage rate on 1 July 2019 and 1 July 2020 as per Fair Work Commission 2017 decision.

Friday, 10 May 2019

“Welfare-to-work” is now a billion-dollar industry which consistently fails vulnerable jobseekers

The Guardian, 4 May 2019:

“Welfare-to-work” is now a billion-dollar industry. Providers compete for the lucrative contracts, worth $7.6bn to the taxpayer over five years when the last round was signed in 2015.

Proponents for the privatised system argue the model is much cheaper and boasts a better cost-to-outcome ratio.

But myriad reports – including recent findings from a Senate committee and a government-appointed panel – have found the most disadvantaged jobseekers are being left behind.

In 2002, a Productivity Commission report that was largely supportive of the then-new privatised model still warned “many disadvantaged job seekers receive little assistance … so-called ‘parking’”. That practice still occurs under this name today, according to employment consultants who spoke to Guardian Australia for this story.

When a person applies for Newstart, they are assigned a Jobactive provider and placed into one of three categories ordered by the level of assistance they might need: streams A, B and C.

The outlook for the most-disadvantaged jobseekers is bleak: only a quarter will find work each year. Overall, 40% of those receiving payments will still be on welfare in two years. While Jobactive has recorded 1.1 million “placements” since 2015, one in five people have been in the system for more than five years.

New data provided to Guardian Australia by the Department of Jobs and Small Business shows about 1.9 million people have participated in Jobactive between July 2015 and 31 January 2019. In that time, 350,000 – or 18% – have been recorded gaining employment and getting off income support for longer than 26 weeks.

And of those 350,000, only 35,852 – or 10% – had been classified as disadvantaged in Stream C.

Since Lanyon was placed on Jobactive, he’s had eight job interviews and sent in about 150 applications. Eighteen months ago he says he slept in his car and showered at a homeless shelter after finding work close enough to take but too far away for a daily commute.

He knows his chances of getting back into work diminish each day he’s out of the workforce.