Showing posts with label unemployment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label unemployment. Show all posts

Friday, 16 October 2020

For over 6 years the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Government deliberately underspent funds earmarked to assist unemployed people 50 years of age & older


On 11 July 2014 then Australian Prime Minister & Liberal MP for Warringah Tony Abbott launched the Restart programme.

Restart is a financial incentive of up to $10,000 (GST inclusive) to encourage businesses to hire and retain mature age employees who are 50 years of age and over.

Payments are made by employment services providers to businesses over six months. Employers can negotiate how often they receive the payments.

Business may also be able to get up to $10,000 (GST inclusive) when they hire an eligible new employee who is either: 15 - 24 years of age or an Indigenous Australian.

To apply for this financial incentive businesses need to contact a job service provider on the federal Dept. of Education, Skills and Employment list of approved providers.

Employment services providers determine if a wage subsidy is offered and will enter into an agreement with the employer to make payments over six months.

All wage subsidy placements must average at least 20 hours per week over the 26 week wage subsidy period to be ongoing.

Restart has continued to operate under three successive Liberal-National federal governments.

On 14 October 2020 The Guardian reported that:

The federal government has spent less than half what it planned to help older Australians into work and more than 40% of those receiving wage subsidies were out of a job within three months.

Only $254m has been spent to help 51,190 mature-age people into work, despite the Coalition promising in 2014 to spend $520m to help up to 32,000 older Australians find a job every year.

Of the 51,190 people helped by the Restart wage subsidy, just 30,379 remained in employment for 13 weeks or more, with less than half (21,966) lasting more than six months.

The figures, provided by the employment department, cast new light on the effectiveness of the program cited by the Morrison government as evidence it is already helping older workers…..

In the budget, the treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, announced $4bn of wage subsidies for companies that hire workers aged 35 and under, prompting a backlash that the budget contained no new measures for older workers.

In response, Scott Morrison has said the Restart program, which provides $10,000 wage subsidies for those aged over 50 and unemployed for six months or more, had helped 50,000 Australians into a job.

In the 2014 budget, the Abbott government provided $520m for the Restart program…..

On Tuesday, the employment department revealed that, up to 31 August this year, just $254m had been spent on the program….

Monday, 12 October 2020

Morrison Government ignores the "Pink Recession" in Budget 2020-21


"Women drive on roads. They will benefit from our infrastructure spend" [in Budget 2020-21]. [Senator Michaelia Cash, Channel 10 clip in The Project program, 8 October 2020]

The Guardian, 8 October 2020:

The prime minister, Scott Morrison, is angry with women. Not all of us, just those making a fuss about the woeful lack of attention to women’s workforce participation, economic security and safety in the budget his treasurer handed down on Tuesday night.

After early childhood education advocate and journalist Georgie Dent published an article in Women’s Agenda pointing out that the biggest-spending budget in history had allocated roughly a third of 1% of its funds for women’s economic security (citing a figure I tweeted from the Per Capita account during the budget presentation on Tuesday night), she received a call from the PM’s office to complain that “no one credible” was making such a complaint, and that “nothing in the budget is gendered”.

To quote one famous working woman: big mistake. Big. Huge.

Within a couple of hours, the hashtag #CredibleWomen was born, and soon trending in Australia. Twenty-four hours later, more than 1,000 very angry, and highly credible, women and men had joined the fray, including prominent journalists and commentators, business leaders, former federal politicians, economists and sociologists, and even the family members of former prime ministers, both Labor and Liberal. So much for no one credible.

As for the claim that nothing in the budget was gendered – that’s the point. Proudly declaring that no gender analysis was done on the budget reveals a disturbing ignorance of the inherent bias in our economic system, and a fundamental confusion between the concepts of equality and equity. A budget that treats everyone equally, ignoring the fact that women start from a place of significant disadvantage on almost every meaningful economic measure, simply entrenches gender inequality and, in light of the disproportionate impact of the current recession on women, actually risks sending us backwards.

The fact is, the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent economic collapse have hit women particularly hard. While previous recessions were typified by declining aggregate demand for manufactured goods and services, the current downturn is marked by a partial or total shutdown of many service industries, which are dominated by female workers.

Social distancing restrictions have resulted in an unparalleled collapse in demand, which has had an immediate impact on sectors of the market unused to bearing the brunt of economic shocks, with widespread jobs losses in retail, entertainment and hospitality. Universities, too, are shedding jobs at an alarming rate, and many of the jobs in research, teaching and administration that have been lost will not return even if and when international students do.

As a result, unemployment for women in this Covid-induced economic collapse is double that of the 1990s recession. While women suffered roughly 25% of all job losses in the early 1990s, they account for more than 50% of the newly unemployed today.

A budget that treats everyone equally ... simply entrenches gender inequality”

Yet the Morrison government seems to have failed to come to grips with the different nature of this recession compared to previous downturns, or to have grasped the significant changes in our labour market over the three decades since Australia last faced the task of rebuilding a shattered economy. The budget released on Tuesday night was a fine plan for recovery from the recession of the early 1990s, but not so much for the one we face today…..

The full article can be read here.


According to Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Labor Force original data, in December 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic had entered the country, the female workforce participation rate was 61.6 per cent and total number of unemployed females was 295,100 individuals.

A Parliamentary Budget Report found that 56 per cent of those unemployed females were women aged 45 years and older.

By end of August 2020 the female workforce participation rate was 59.7 per cent - a 3 per cent participation fall. While the unemployment figure had grown to 418,600 females of working force age – a 29 per cent increase in unemployment.

In December 2019 the male workforce participation rate was 71.4 per cent and the total number of unemployed males was 371,600 individuals.

Of these unemployed males 45 per cent were men aged 45 years and older.

By end of August 2020 male workforce participation rate was 69.4 per cent a 3 per cent  participation fall. While the unemployment figure has risen to 503,000 males of working force age - a 26 per cent increase in unemployment. 

Comparing total females and males who considered themselves underemployed between December 2019 and August 2020:

  • Underemployed females totalled 690,200 workers in December 2019 and 753,200 workers in August 2020 - an est. 9 per cent increase in underemployment over the 9 month period; and
  • Underemployed males totalled 503,000 workers in December 2019 and 723,300 workers in August 2020 - an est. 31 per cent increase in underemployment.

Females in employment worked a combined total of 736,643,500 hours in December 2019 and a total of 702,547,200 hours in August 2020 - an est. 5 per cent fall in hours worked. 

Males in employment worked a combined total of 1,044,184,200 hours in December 2019 and a total of 980,844,400 hours in August 2020 - an est. 6 per cent fall.

When breaking that down further by looking at the percentage of females who had between 35-44 hours paid work a week it was 32.1% of all employed females, with another 19.8 per cent working less than 20 hours. While for males receiving 34-44 hours of paid work a week it was 42.1 per cent of all employed males, with another 11.1 per cent working under 20 hours a week.

Overall since the impact of the COVID-19 begun to be felt both males and females experienced swings and roundabouts when it came to employment. 

However, compared with men, over the last decade a higher proportion of unemployed women are now either older women, have a reduced capacity to work, are carers or sole parents. 

While the bottom line is that despite the JobKeeper subsidised wage program, at the end of the last 9 months there are still more females out of work than there are males in the same predicament and more employed females than males with less than a full week's work.

When it came to ABS records for industry sectors with the highest job losses year-to-year it was clear highest losses occurred in sectors with traditionally high female employment levels:

JUNE 2019 to JUNE 2020

Accommodation - jobs down 25.5 per cent

Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services - jobs down 15.6 per cent

Clubs, pubs, taverns and bars - jobs down 15.6 per cent

Tourism - jobs down 15.1 per cent

Travel agency and information centre services - 17.9 per cent

Retail Trade - jobs down 9.0 per cent.

Tourism jobs peaked at 748,200 in December 2019 and in June 2020 were at the lowest level (611,700) since June 2014. More females work in tourism than males so there were more jobs lost by females with a reduction of 88,100 (-21.5%) jobs compared to a fall of 48,300 (-14.3%) for males.

The Australian Treasury is reportedly predicting that unemployment will remain high for several years, but that it will peak at 8% in the December quarter of 2020. However, indications are that unemployment will not fall below 5 per cent until sometime after 2024.  

It is statistics such as these which have led to political commentators dubbing the current economic recession In Australia, the "pink recession" or "shecession".

Terms with which Scott Morrison appears to take great exception. Women it seems are never to speak up on economic matters unless it is to agree with his world view.

According to Taylor Fry Consulting Actuaries' research, by 29 August 2020 in the Clarence Valley the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic was rated "Medium" for most of the valley but at the upper end of "High" was Maclean-Iluka-Yamba which are heavily dependent on tourism.

As it is for Byron Bay where the impact was also rated at the upper limit of "High", while the remainder of the Northern Rivers region was at the lower limit of "High" with the exception of Kyogle and Casino which were rated "Medium".

In 2019 the NSW Northern Rivers region had a resident population of est. 304,325 people with a high number of older residents. In fact at the last Census around 133,332 were aged between 50 and 100 years of age.

In 2020 the Northern New South Wales Local Health District data indicated that females made up 49.22 per cent of the regional population - with est. 30 per cent of that regional population being females of workforce age.

That's an awful lot of Northern Rivers women Scott Morrison & his Cabinet have chosen to brush aside in the worst recession in 30 years.

Saturday, 25 July 2020

Australia 2020: and now for some economic bad news

On 23 July 2020 Australian Treasurer and Liberal MP for Kooyong Josh Frydenberg delivered a national economic and fiscal update.

He dutifully posted an upbeat media release and published the official update documents.

Here is a preliminary takeaway from this update*:

  • total federal government payments have increased by $58.0 billion in 2019-20 and increased by $187.5 billion over the two years to 2020-21. The net impact of policy decisions since the 2019-20 MYEFO has increased payments by $58.0 billion in 2019-20 and $113.7 billion in 2020-21.
  • declines in taxation receipts were $31.7 billion in 2019-20 and are expected to be $63.9 billion in 2020-21;
  • the underlying cash balance is expected to decrease to an $85.8 billion deficit in 2019-20 and an $184.5 billion deficit in 2020-21. This is a a deterioration of $281.4 billion over these two years since the 2019-20 MYEFO;
  • as a percentage of GDP the underlying cash balance is expected to be -9.7 per cent in 2020-21;
  • debt levels have increased significantly. Gross debt was $546 billion (28.1 per cent of GDP) at 30 June 2019 and $684.3 billion (34.4 per cent of GDP) at 30 June 2020 and is expected to be $851.9 billion (45.0 per cent of GDP) at 30 June 2021. With net debt at 30 June 2019 standing at 373.5 billion (19.2 per cent of GDP), expected to be $488.2 billion (24.6 per cent of GDP) at 30 June 2020 and increase to $677.1 billion (35.7 per cent of GDP) at 30 June 2021;
  • on a calendar-year basis real GDP fell by 3.75 per cent;
  • real GDP is forecast to have fallen sharply in the June quarter 2020 by 7 per cent;
  • nominal GDP is expected to be -4.75 per cent in 2020-21;
  • nationally 709,000 jobs were lost in the June quarter 2020;
  • the unemployment rate in June 2020 was 7.4 per cent and is expected to peak at around 9.25 per cent in the December quarter 2020 and is forecast to be at 8.75 per cent in 2020-21;
  • Treasury has predicted that immigration will fall to 31,000 individuals in 2020-21 which is likely to affect the national budget bottom line; and
  • the Morrison Government's go-to remedy for the poor economic outlook is to (i) consider reducing the federal government's taxation income even further by est. $143 billion in personal income tax receipts over 10 years commencing in 2021-22, (ii) reduce welfare spending by further limiting eligibility and reducing payment levels for JobSeeker and JobKeeper recipients from 25 September 2020 with the Coronavirus Supplement due to be removed completely by 31 December 2020, (iii) incease the level of casual and insecure work via industrial relations 'reform', and (iv) encourage women to have more babies to compensate for the current moribund population growth rate.

* The Economic and Fiscal Update June 2020 is affected by the economic impacts of the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic and to a lesser extent by the the impacts of the 2019-20 bushfires. 

Componding the situation is the high level of federal government borrowings which regularly occurred after 18 September 2013.

On 30 September 2013 the gross national debt stood at est. $220.67 billion and net national debt was $174.55 billion. At that time net national debt was in the vicinity of 13% of GDP. 

By 2 April 2019 the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Government had raised the gross national debt to $534.42 billion. That's more than double the national debt left by the previous Labor federal government. 

On 2 April 2019 Frydenberg was predicting that gross national debt would rise to $627.26 billion by end of June 2019 with net national debt coming in at $373.47 billion and net debt predicted to come in at 19.2% of GDP by end of June. 

By 30 June 2019 the federal government paid est. $18.15 billion in interest on this debt in the 2018-19 financial year. 

The bottom line is that before either the bushfires or the pandemic even began the Morrison Government gross national debt stood at $546 billion or 28.1 per cent of Australia's GDP and net debt stood at 373.5 billion or 19.2 per cent of GDP by 30 June 2019.

Therefore emergency national funding for bushfires and pandemic only accounts for est. 23.5 per cent of the current national debt.

As at 30 May the Morrison Government's total liabilities in 2020 ran to $1,324.95 billion against assets of $700.74 billion according to Australian Government General Government Sector Monthly Financial Statements May 2020.

Sunday, 19 July 2020

Unemployment in Australia is at a 22 year high, however NSW is faring a little better

Australian Bureau of Statistics, Labour Force June 2020, 16 July 2020:

  • Employment increased 210,800 to 12,328,500 people. 
  • Full-time employment decreased 38,100 to 8,489,100 people and part-time employment increased 249,000 to 3,839,400 people. 
  • Unemployment increased 69,300 to 992,300 people. 
  • Unemployment rate increased 0.4 pts to 7.4%. 
  • Underemployment rate decreased 1.4 pts to 11.7%. 
  • Underutilisation rate decreased 1.0 pts to 19.1%. 
  • Participation rate increased by 1.3 pts to 64.0%. 
  • Monthly hours worked in all jobs increased 64.3 million hours to 1,664.7 million hours.
  • Employment for 15-24 year olds increased by 101,500 people (6.3%). 
  • Unemployment rate for this group increased 0.4 pts to 16.4%.
  • Participation Rate for 15-24 year olds increased 3.9 pts to 63.5%. 
  • Around 30% of the people moving into employment in June were aged 15 to 24 years.
New South Wales in June 2020 :
  • Number of Employed Persons rose by est. 81,000 to total 3,949,500 individuals. This still leaves a gap of est.124,200 persons who lost the job they held in January 2020 and have not yet found other employment (original data);
  • Full-time Employment rose by est. 8,200 positions (original data);
  • Part-time Employment rose by est. 72,800 positions (original data);
  • the Employment to Population Ratio was Persons 59.5, Males 64.4, Females 54.8 (original data);
  • the Unemployment Rate was Persons 6.7%, Males 6.7%, Females 6.8% (original data);
  • Underemployed Persons totalled est. 473,900 individuals (original data); and
  • the Workforce Participation Rate was Persons 63.8% - up 1.6 percentage points, Males 69.0% - up 2 percentage points, Females 58.7% - up 1.6 percentage points (original data).

Friday, 5 June 2020

Job losses in the NSW Northern Rivers region due to COVID-19 pandemic

In the December quarter of 2019 the NSW Northern Rivers region had a labour force population of est. 144,083 people across seven local government areas.

The unemployment rate varied in council areas from 3% (Ballina) up to 6.4% (Clarence Valley). 

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics by April 2020 job vacancies had fallen by 50% in NSW and the state unemployment rate was 6%. Of those with employment 14% were classed as underemployed.

Job Losses In Northern Rivers Region Due To COVID-19 from 14 March 2020 to 2 May 2020 according to Australian Development Strategies

Page electorate - est. 4,581 jobs

Richmond electorate - est. 5,217 jobs

These figures indicate that an est. 16% of jobs no longer existed in the Northern Rivers region after COVID-19 public health measures were imposed.

It is not known how many businesses are receiving the JobKeeper wage subsidy of $1,500 per fortnight for workers they have retained to date.


Australian Electoral Commission states:

  • Page covers an area from Sapphire Beach in the south to Nimbin in the north on the coastal side, and from Nymboida in the south to the Queensland border on the inland side. The main towns include Casino, Dunoon, Evans Head, Grafton, Iluka, Kyogle, Lismore, Nimbin, Sapphire Beach and Wooli.  
  • Richmond covers an area from the New South Wales/Queensland border in the north to Ballina and Pimlico in the south. The main towns include Ballina, Bangalow, Brunswick Heads, Burringbar, Byron Bay, Hastings Point, Kingscliff, Lennox Head, Mullumbimby, Murwillumbah, Suffolk Park, and Tweed Heads. 

Monday, 1 June 2020

The Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Government preparing another assault on workers' rights and conditions - this time using the COVID-19 pandemic as an excuse

Australian Prime Minister & Liberal MP for Cook Scott Morrison is considering dumping the BOOT test - the better off overall test - that governs the nation's enterprise bargaining system for establishing wages and conditions.

It is clear that he is laying the groundwork for this in the wording used in a press conference on 29 May 2020 when speaking of jobs and industrial relations reform.

Introduced in the 1994 enterprise bargaining is the process of negotiation generally between the employer, employees and their bargaining representatives with the goal of making an enterprise agreement

The Fair Work Act 2009 established clear rules and obligations about how this process is to occur, including rules about bargaining, the content of enterprise agreements, and how an agreement is made and approved.

Since the inception of enterprising bargaining est.161,728 enterprise agreements were created. However, only est. 10,877 remained by September 2019, as agreement numbers fell off markedly after a Fair Work Commission decision that every individual worker had to be better off in an enterprise bargaining agreement than under the relevant industry award.

Employers found it harder to reduce wages and conditions after that ruling and lost some of their enthusiasm - preferring instead to increasingly casualise their staff and/or transform them into rolling fixed contract workers.

Now in the middle of a global pandemic business groups are reportedly calling for removal of more conditions from awards and workplace pay deals as key priorities.

With the Australian Industry Group calling for reform in three key industrial relations areas by: 
  • changing enterprise bargaining laws in the current Fair Work Act; 
  • simplifying awards by removing conditions dealt with in legislation such as annual leave, personal/carer’s leave, redundancy pay, notice of termination, consultation, dispute resolution, flexibility agreements and requests for flexible work arrangements; 
  • removing barriers to "flexibility" in awards which would potentially allow lowering of labour costs;
  • retaining current civil penalties for underpayment of a worker's wage rather than creating a criminal offence for serious underpayments/deliberate theft;
  • abandoning the better off overall test for enterprise agreements;
  • further restriction potential union intervention in the enterprise bargaining process;
  • further restricting protected industrial action by workers; and 
  • extinguishing the new right of casuals working full-time hours to paid annual leave and public holiday entitlements (See Workpac v Rossato & Workpac v Skene).
Using job losses due to COVID-19 pandemic public health orders as an excuse, it is apparent that Morrison intends yet another sustained assault on penalty rates, wages and conditions.

Morrison is willing to progress this assault as far as introducing a bill or bills in the Australian Parliament drafted without the co-operation of unions or even some industry sectors if necessary.

Despite protestations otherwise, it is clear that the Liberal and National political parties are opening up another front in their seemingly endless, ideologically-driven, class war.

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....

Monday, 4 May 2020

By 24 April 2020 there were 1,346,172 unemployed people across Australia, at least 500,000 of whom had lost their jobs due to the pandemic

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics in January 2020 there were est. 778,700‬ people of workforce age who were unemployed in Australia and, est. 207,200 (26.6%) of these were New South Wales residents.

By 24 April 2020 there were est. 1,346,172 unemployed people (between the ages of 15 to 64 years) spread across the nation and, it is likely that unemployed people in New South Wales then exceeded est. 224,700 individuals.

The national figure represents an additional 567,472 unemployed people between January and late April - with an est. 500,000 of this number out of work due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Initial results in a Monash Univerity ongoing study suggests that 90% of those who lost their jobs due to COVID-19 public health restrictions/changed economic climate were given less than one week's notice and of those 44.7% received no notice at all.

Processing unemployment benefit applications for over half a million extra Australians in need is taking time and, est. 317,597 applications were still outstanding on 24 April.

Apart from an initial $750 economic support payment for those receiving Jobseeker (previously Newstart), no enhanced unemployment benefits or JobKeeper* subsidised wage payments commenced until after 27 April 2020, with some payments not due to be received until 11 May [See Senate Select Committee on COVID-19, public hearing transcript, 30 April 2020, p.22]. 

Which means that, commencing on 28 February, between est. 20,320 to 249,875 Australian citizens had been without income support** and those single people on unemployment benefits had been struggling to live on as little as est. $18-$40 per day.

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

Goldman Sachs analysts are reportedly predicting an effective unemployment rate*** of 19 per cent by June-July.

Prime Minister & Liberal MP for Cook Scott Morrison is adamant that once the pandemic crisis passes all enhanced unemployment benefit rates will return to pre-pandemic levels - he is less clear about where the est. 1.74 million out of work Australians will be able to find a job.


* As of 28 April 2020 an est. 540,000 businesses have registered for the JobKeeper wage subsidisation scheme. The est. 3.3 million workers in these businesses are considered employed. JobKeeper wage payments to workers are subject to tax which is witheld by employers before payment is made.

** This last figure does not take into consideration unemployed non-citizens on student or work visas who are ineligible to apply for unemployment benefits.

*** An effective unemployment rate takes into consideration those who have had their hours of paid worik reduced, those who have given up looking for work since they lost their jobs and, those receiving JobKeeper payments but whose employer has temporarily ceased operating or is not operating at full capacity and therefore they are not going to work.

Wednesday, 15 April 2020

1.4 million Australians expected to be out of work during COVID-19 pandemic

ABC News, 13 April 2020:

Unemployment is set to soar to its highest rate in almost three decades, with 1.4 million Australians expected to be out of work.
New Treasury figures forecast the jobless rate will double in the June quarter from 5.1 per cent to 10 per cent, all but confirming Australia will enter a recession as it deals with the COVID-19 pandemic.
It will be the first time the unemployment rate has hit double digits since April 1994 and the figure is a fraction below Australia's peak unemployment rate of 11.2 per cent in 1992......

Read the full article here.

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.

Monday, 5 August 2019

Clarence Valley youth invited to speak up at Youth Employment Forum, 5.30-7.30pm on 12 August 2019 at Grafton District Services Club

In March Quarter 2019 the overall unemployment rate on the NSW North Coast was 5.2 per cent.

In the Clarence Valley the unemployment rate was higher at  9.7 per cent, according to Australian Government Small Area Labour Markets data.

Yet youth unemployment in the valley could be as high as 20.3 per cent.

Time to give those most affected by this disproportionate situation a voice.......

Clarence Valley Council, media release, 2 August 2019: 

 Speak up about youth employment 

YOUTH in the Clarence Valley are being encouraged to attend a forum in Grafton next week where they can speak with potential employers and other key stakeholders about available options. 

The Youth Employment Forum is being hosted by The New School of Arts Neighbourhood House and Clarence Valley Council and will be held at the Grafton District Services Club on August 12 from 5.30- 7.30pm. 

Council community development officer (youth), Allira Newton, said the event was designed to encourage conversations with key stakeholders, young people and the community in order to identify issues, develop strategies and, most importantly, open up opportunities for collaboration across all facets of the community. 

“The event will explore round table topics with the aim of developing a youth employment strategic plan in collaboration with community members, service providers and business stakeholders,” she said. 

“We want as many young people and community members at this forum as possible, so we’re urging them to register today for the opportunity to be part of the change and tackling the issue of youth unemployment in the Clarence Valley.” 

The forum was developed from the local Youth Interagency group where youth unemployment was identified as an area of focus for the community. 

To register visit or contact the New School of Arts youth team on 6640 3800 or Allira on 0428 420 908.

Saturday, 3 August 2019

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