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Gillard youth allowance roundtable only for Labor.

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Gillard youth allowance roundtable only for Labor

The Government’s ‘Hollowmen’ have invented a Youth Roundtable face saver on the retrospective changes to youth allowance but arrogantly continue to play politics by only inviting hand picked students from Labor electorates, Shadow Education Minister Christopher Pyne said today.

“Students within Coalition electorates, which cover the vast majority of rural and regional areas, are being excluded from a taxpayer funded Youth Roundtable,” Mr Pyne said.

“Does the Government only want to hear from people hand picked by their Members?” he asked.

“According to the Minister’s press release she only wants to speak to young people and Members of Parliament from Labor electorates and from one Independent electorate.

“By only selecting youth from Labor electorates Ms Gillard has exposed this face saving exercise as a partisan farce. Without representation from all Australian youth from both Labor and Coalition electorates, how can the Minister really claim she is ready to listen to the truth.

“For months the Coalition Members and Senators have been campaigning for the Government to overturn the retrospective changes to youth allowance which will withdraw eligibility from students currently on their gap year. For months Julia Gillard has refused to budge.

“Now, in the face of enormous protest not only from the Coalition but from the minor parties and independents, the Minister announces she is holding a youth roundtable, but only from youth in Labor electorates,” he said.

“This is further evidence that Ms Gillard is a part-time Minister for Education who doesn’t have time to consider the consequences of her policy positions,” Mr Pyne said.

August 21, 2009

Media contact: Adam Howard 0400 414 833