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Monday, 3 November 2003
Page: 21898

Mr Albanese asked the Minister for Employment Services, upon notice, on 18 September 2003:

(1) Does he recall telling the annual conference of the National Employment Services Association on 22 August 2003 that: “Today, as I stand before you, there are more than 60,000 Australians who have received unemployment who you have made numerous attempts to get through your doors, who have had letters, who have had phone calls from you and Centrelink. They've had their doors knocked on.”

(2) How many job seekers have been door-knocked by staff from either Centrelink or Job Network providers between 1 July 2003 and 31 August 2003.

Mr Brough (Minister for Employment Services and Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence) —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) Yes.

(2) My use of the term `They've had their doors knocked on' was a figure of speech to emphasise the efforts made by Job Network members and Centrelink to follow-up on job seekers by sending them letters, making reminder calls and rebooking appointments in order to have job seekers attend appointments. More than 2 million letters and telephone calls have been sent or made to job seekers by Centrelink or a Job Network member during the transition to An Active Participation Model. Having said this, I have been advised by Job Network members that they have, in some cases, resorted to door-knocking to encourage job seeker attendance at appointments. These reports are, however, anecdotal and statistics as to how many job seekers have been approached in this manner have not been kept.