Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Tudge failing on robo-debt, Senate inquiry hears



Download PDFDownload PDF

HON LINDA BURNEY MP SHADOW MINISTER FOR HUMAN SERVICES MEMBER FOR BARTON

TUDGE FAILING ON ROBO-DEBT, SENATE INQUIRY HEARS

A senate inquiry into Alan Tudge’s robo-debt debacle has heard today about a litany of failures in the program from community groups, unions, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and the Department of Human Services (DHS) itself.

Amongst the most stunning revelations about the program, which Mr Tudge claims has “recouped” $300m in savings, is that it his own Department says they’ve only seen $24 million paid back to the government.

Extraordinarily despite being offered assistance by the ATO, the Department of Human Services declined to meet with the ATO in February. Instead DHS informed the ATO that there were no issues with the robo-debt program that needed to be addressed.

The inquiry also heard that Mr Tudge has so far refused to act on or respond to the concerns raised by the Australian Council of Social Services (ACOSS) in January this year and that the department could not even commit to meeting with ACOSS without speaking to the minister first.

On the first day of the inquiry the credibility of Mr Tudge’s claims has been shredded - it will only get worse from here.

It is time for Mr Tudge to actually do something to fix his broken system.

For weeks we’ve been hearing community concerns about the program and Mr Tudge has insisted there were no issues at all, clearly that is untrue. It’s time for Mr Tudge to come clean, admit he made a mistake and fix it.

The administration of the robo-debt system has been a disaster. Enough is enough.

WEDNESDAY, 8 MARCH 2017

MEDIA CONTACT: RHEUBEN FREELANDER 0422 044 390