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Labor goes soft on the work-shy.



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Wed, 24th September 2008 LABOR GOES SOFT ON THE WORK-SHY

Dr Andrew Southcott MP Shadow Minister for Employment Participation, Training and Sport

Labor’s proposed amendments to the Social Security Act are soft on job seekers who do not want to look for work. Coupled with Labor’s winding back of Work for the Dole, this makes a mockery of mutual obligation.

Mutual Obligation is based on the concept that if you are in receipt of a welfare payment, you should be either actively seeking work, or contributing back to society.

There is strong community support for enforcing the responsibilities which come with welfare. The Minister for Employment Participation needs to recognise this, and stop meddling with Work for the Dole and the compliance regime.

There is no consistency in Labor’s policy direction. Last month Labor announced they would quarantine welfare payments for the parents of children who don't turn up to school. Yet they are removing this system for those who do not turn up to work or job interviews.

Labor are espousing these changes based on their belief that they echo what happens in the ‘real world’. Labor’s model is a ‘no show, no pay’ model, whereby job seekers are docked a day’s pay if they do not show up to work or job interviews. Yet in the real world, employees who repeatedly failed to show up to work without good reason would not just lose a day’s pay- they would lose their jobs.