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Thursday, 5 May 1994
Page: 342

Senator HARRADINE (3.27 p.m.) —I did not have an opportunity to ask a question today with regard to unemployment, but I wish to raise two very quick issues with the minister. The first issue is: how does forcing thousands and thousands of people previously eligible for the widows pension out into the paid work force to compete with young people help to reduce unemployment? That is the question. What sense is there in that? What choice is there for a 55-year-old person who has just been widowed and has five children and 13 grandchildren and is forced into the paid work force and into competing against others for a job? That just does not make sense. It is crazy.

  The second point I wish to raise relates to part-time and casual employment. I agree that quite a large number of people want casual or part-time jobs but, for sure, the young unemployed want the opportunity to have full-time employment. I think the minister acknowledges that, and I hope that those matters will also be taken into account between now and budget time.

  Question resolved in the affirmative.