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Thursday, 24 May 2001
Page: 24276

Motion (by Senator Allison)—as amended, by leave—agreed to:

That the Senate—

(a) notes the resolutions agreed by the Horsham Rural City Council, the Southern Grampians Shire Council and the Warrnambool City Council on 19 March 2001:

(i) that Telstra immediately stop offering redundancies in rural Australia,

(ii) that the Government use its majority ownership of Telstra to ensure this happens,

(iii) that all political parties in the lead-up to the next federal election state their position on the issue of government-funded jobs in rural Australia, and

(iv) that Telstra reveal the financial implications of operating call centres, particularly in rural areas and what the financial implications are of Telstra's employment policies in respect to rural Australia;

(b) calls on the Government to publicly respond to those resolutions;

(c) notes the proposed closure of Telstra Regional Directory Call Centres in Hamilton, Horsham, Warrnambool, Mount Gambier, Ararat and Swan Hill and calls on Telstra to reconsider the impact of its decisions on regional employment; and

(d) reminds the Government of the importance of local Telstra Call Centres to the economic benefit and prosperity of regional Australia.