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Monday, 23 November 2015
Page: 13242


Ms CHESTERS (Bendigo) (13:36): As we left parliament a few weeks ago, some people in my electorate received some pretty shocking news. The Department of Education and Training will cease using the Bendigo based Serco call centre to deliver one of their contracts. This will affect about 50 to 60 locals in my electorate, who have now lost their jobs. The department has confirmed that they will not be renewing the contract, which will expire on 20 January. The department has advised Serco that they will be entering into alternative arrangements and will therefore no longer require Serco's services and that of the 60 people in my electorate who currently work for Serco. They have said that they are going to insource the work, which could be great news for people in Canberra who may have lost their jobs under this government, given the local job cuts.

My questions to the minister are these. Will the Department of Education and Training be employing an additional 60 staff to perform this role? Will any of these new departmental jobs created as a result of the insourcing be situated in Bendigo? Will the workers laid off by Serco due to the insourcing be given an opportunity to apply for these jobs? We have lost lots of jobs in my electorate since this government came to office. The least they could do is guarantee future work for these workers in Bendigo.