JobSeeker’s block on work to be scrutinised

Original article by John Kehoe
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 3 : 22-May-20

The federal government’s decision to double the JobSeeker allowance will be scrutinised as part of its forthcoming review of the JobKeeper wage subsidy scheme. There are concerns that increasing the unemployment benefit to $550 a week has prompted some casual workers to quit their jobs, as they are of the view that they are financially better off by going on the dole. Treasury secretary Steven Kennedy stresses that JobKeeper and the increased JobKeeper payment are temporary. However, he has flagged the possibility that they may be phased out gradually.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY

Budget impact may be lessened by quicker recovery

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 2 : 29-Apr-20

The federal government is hopeful that Australia’s success in containing the coronavirus will result in the JobKeeper wage subsidy scheme costing far less than the $130bn that has been budgeted. The government had expected about six million workers to access the payment; Treasury secretary Steven Kennedy has told a parliamentary inquiry that there have been 540,000 applications from employers to date, covering about 3.3 million workers. The cost of the JobSeeker package for the unemployed may also end up being less than forecast.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY

Government relents on Newstart

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 4 : 20-Mar-20

The second phase of the federal government’s stimulus package will include an increase in the Newstart allowance for people who are currently unemployed. The Coalition had previously flagged a higher income payment than Newstart for workers who lose their job due to the coronavirus outbreak. However, it has long opposed an increase in unemployment benefits, arguing that getting a job is the best form of welfare. Prime Minister Scott Morrison has conceded that getting people off Newstart and into the labour market will be difficult over the next six months due to the economic impact of the pandemic.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET

No surplus sacrifice for dole boost

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 22-Jul-19

The federal government is resisting pressure from welfare groups and unions to increase the Newstart allowance by $75 a week. The Treasury estimates that this would cost $12.5bn over four years and $39bn over a decade, and it would slash the projected Budget surplus for 2019-20. Labor has also called for Newstart to be increased, although it has not nominated a figure. Employment Minister Michaelia Cash says the government’s priority is getting people off welfare and into the workforce, and notes that Labor has opposed or criticised all of the Coalition’s employment programs.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF JOBS AND SMALL BUSINESS, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, ACTU, NATIONAL SENIORS AUSTRALIA LIMITED, BUSINESS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN GREENS, KPMG AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

Labor flags the end of Work for Dole

Original article by Eryk Bagshaw
The Age – Page: 8 : 2-Nov-18

Labor’s employment services spokeswoman Terri Butler has queried whether the $65 million spent each year on the "Work for the Dole" program is money well spent. There are claims that the program does not have a high success rate in terms of participants finding jobs, and that participants have been put into unsafe workplaces. As well as signs that Labor may scrap the scheme if it wins the next federal election, there are indications that it may cancel employment services contracts under the federal government’s $7.3 billion Jobactive program.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, NATIONAL EMPLOYMENT SERVICES ASSOCIATION, AUSTRALIAN GREENS, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF JOBS AND SMALL BUSINESS

Rise for $38-a-day Newstart ruled out

Original article by David Crowe
The Australian – Page: 4 : 21-Sep-16

It is estimated that about 770,000 people currently receive the Newstart payment, and the Australian Council of Social Service advocates increasing it by $A53 a week. However, Social Services Minister Christian Porter has rejected calls for an increase in Newstart, arguing that while the base payment is set at $A38 per day, the majority of recipients also receive other welfare payments. Porter has also defended the Budget measure which requires people to wait four weeks before being eligible to claim the Newstart allowance.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF SOCIAL SERVICES, AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL OF SOCIAL SERVICE, BUSINESS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN GREENS

PM wavers on benefits

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 4 : 31-Jul-14

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Treasurer Joe Hockey have signalled their willingness to make changes to the proposed reform of unemployment benefits. The original proposal has been criticised as too harsh. Peter Strong, CEO of the Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia, said the requirement for 40 job applications per month would create an administrative nightmare

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF EMPLOYMENT, COUNCIL OF SMALL BUSINESS ORGANISATIONS OF AUSTRALIA LIMITED