The Coalition Government’s remote employment programme has achieved a highly significant milestone with the number of six-month employment outcomes reaching 5000.
The Community Development Programme (CDP) has also resulted in remote jobseekers being placed into more than 15,000 jobs since it started on 1 July 2015.
Speaking today after visiting the CDP provider Miwatj Employment and Participation in Arnhem Land to mark the milestones, Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion, said the programme was having a transformational impact on remote jobseekers.
“The Community Development Programme is changing for the better the lives of thousands of people living in remote communities across Australia,” Minister Scullion said.
“The CDP is getting remote jobseekers into work – and on more than 5000 occasions they have stayed in the job for at least 26 weeks.
“The 26-week outcome is critical because we know if a person stays in a job for at least six months, they have a far greater chance of staying in work over the long term.
“That’s why it is worth celebrating the fact that CDP jobseekers had moved off welfare and into 5084 real, meaningful jobs for at least six months.
“This achievement can be attributed to CDP participants, providers, communities, local businesses and governments working together to deliver outcomes for remote Australia.
“The CDP is about giving remote jobseekers the opportunity to build skills and contribute to their communities, becoming ready to take up work when it becomes available.
“This promotes routine, safer communities and builds positive role models for children, so they have a better future.”
Minister Scullion said the best part of the CDP was getting people into jobs and he was determined to maintain this focus in any new employment and participation model designed for remote Australia.
The Government will be undertaking a consultation process in the coming months on a new employment and participation model for remote Australia in recognition that more work can be done to break the cycle of welfare dependency in remote communities and better tailor welfare arrangements.
The model will be developed in partnership with remote communities and build on the success of the CDP and many of the positive elements of the former Community Development and Employment Programme.
“I am open to big ideas from all stakeholders on how the Government can better deliver employment services to benefit remote jobseekers and communities,” Minister Scullion said.
“The new model will need to not only provide jobs, but also support school attendance and build safer, healthier communities.
“Improving outcomes for our First Australians and people in the bush generally should be beyond politics and I call on Labor and the cross-benchers to take a constructive approach and work with the Coalition to help develop the new model for remote employment services.”