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Tuesday, 3 February 2009
Page: 119

Dr Southcott asked the Minister for Employment Participation, in writing, on 13 November 2008:

In respect of the new Universal Employment Services Contract for 2009-12, given Treasury has revised its forecasts for unemployment and growth, will there be any revision of the universal employment services model to cater for forecast increased demand.

Mr Brendan O’Connor (Minister for Employment Participation) —The answer to the honourable member’s question is as follows:

The new employment services are demand driven and designed to be flexible to respond to changing economic conditions, including the forecast increase in unemployment.

Every eligible person who needs services to find employment will receive assistance under the new employment services.

The new services will ensure assistance is commensurate with each job seeker’s needs and level of disadvantage.

The government will continue to liaise and consult closely with stakeholders in the lead up and during the implementation of the new employment services, which begin July 1, 2009.

The new employment services along with measures announced as part of the Government’s $10.4 billion Economic Security Strategy, including an increase of 56 000 training places under the Productivity Places Program, will ensure Australia is in the best position to weather the current global financial crisis and skill its workforce for future development.