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Local MP brings Minister to Bankstown to talk jobs.



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Senator Ludwig’s Media Contact: Joe Scavo 0413 800 757 Mr Clare’s Media Contact: Chris Zogopoulos 0412 577 750

MEDIA RELEASE Senator the Hon Joe Ludwig Minister for Human Services Senator for Queensland

Jason Clare MP Member for Blaxland Tuesday 17 February 2008

Local MP brings Minister to Bankstown to talk jobs

Minister for Human Services, Senator Joe Ludwig, joined Member for Blaxland, Jason Clare, in Bankstown today to discuss the effect of the global financial crisis on local jobs.

“This is year is going to be a tough one. Unemployment is going up all around the world and it is already starting to hit us here at home,” Mr Clare said.

“Latest figures from the Bureau of Statistics show unemployment is going up, and in Bankstown more people signed up for unemployment benefits in December than anywhere else in NSW.”

“We have to do everything we can to support local jobs and help people who lose their jobs to get back into the workforce as soon as possible. That’s why I asked the Minister to come to Bankstown to talk to people on the ground,” Mr Clare said.

Senator Ludwig met with front line Centrelink staff and financial counsellors from local organisation Creating Links.

Last week the Rudd Government announced a $42 billion Nation Building and Jobs plan to support jobs and keep the economy growing. The plan includes an Education Entry Payment to assist people returning to study or training.

“This payment will encourage people to skill-up in these difficult economic times,” Senator Ludwig said.

The Government’s plan also includes more than $99 million to upgrade schools in the Bankstown area.

“This is good for local schools, but will also create jobs for local business,” Mr Clare said.

“Today we spoke to a number of people who need help to get back on their feet”, Mr Clare said.

Senator Ludwig’s Media Contact: Joe Scavo 0413 800 757 Mr Clare’s Media Contact: Chris Zogopoulos 0412 577 750

“For many people this is the first time they have had to approach Centrelink for assistance”, Mr Clare said.

“Centrelink has a variety of payments and services available to help people in difficult situations such as retrenchment or redundancy,” Senator Ludwig said.

“In addition to financial support, Centrelink has Financial Information Service Officers available to help people make more informed financial decisions about investment options.”

“They also conduct free seminars on a range of topics including financial planning, superannuation, understanding basic taxation requirements and social security provisions,” Senator Ludwig said.

Six seminars are taking place in the Blaxland electorate on:

Date Place Topic Time

17 February Fairfield Understanding

Superannuation 9:00 - 10:30am

18 February Bankstown Understanding

your Pension 5:30 - 6:30pm

25 February Bankstown Working Beyond

Age Pension age 6:30 - 8:30pm

11 March Bankstown Understanding

your Pension 5:30 - 6:30pm

17 March Fairfield Understanding

Retirement Income Streams

9:00 - 10:30am

25 March Bankstown Understanding

Shares

6:30 - 8:30pm

To make an appointment to speak to a Financial Information Service Officer call 13 2300.

Alternatively you can contact Mr Clare’s Electoral Office on 9790 2466 for more information on what Government assistance may be available for you.

For information about Centrelink services, visit the website www.centrelink.gov.au