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Senate inquiry finds regions doing it tough

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The Senate Employment, Education and Training Committee, chaired by South Australian Senator Rosemary Crowley, is conducting a major inquiry into Regional Unemployment. The Committee will continue its series of national hearings with a meeting in Parramatta

The Australian labour market has changed significantly in the last fifteen years. In many regional areas, including regional areas of capital cities, Government offices and banks have closed, industries have gone, and there is lack of investment.

There have also been major changes to Government programs. The impact of these changes on employment and unemployment has not occurred uniformly across the country. Many regional industrial centres, rural towns and specific regions within capital cities have been particularly affected.

In its hearings in South Australia, New South Wales Victoria and Tasmania the Committee has heard evidence on numerous local issues and already, clear, common patterns and needs are emerging. These include the withdrawal of services and infrastructure, the lack of education and training opportunities, the social impact of regional unemployment and the need for investment in regional development.

‘What people in regional Australia are crying out for is the need to address regional problems with local knowledge, local participation and local investment, in partnership with State and Commonwealth governments’, said Senator Crowley.

The Committee will be holding hearings at the Parkroyal Hotel in Parramatta on Thursday 23 July. It will hear from local government and a range of interest groups.

All hearings are open to the public.

A program of hearings is attached. Further information can be obtained from the Secretary Mr John Carter:

this week.

Telephone: Fax: Mobile:

02 6277 3520 02 62775706 0417 695 340

20 July 1998