Australians in regional and remote communities across Australia are encouraged to have their say on options to further improve employment services in remote communities with the release of a discussion paper on future arrangements for the Community Development Program.
Country Liberals Senator for the Northern Territory, Nigel Scullion, said that the Coalition Government has announced the start of a formal consultation on a new employment and participation model for remote Australia.
“The Community Development Program has created more than 15,000 jobs since it started in 2015, with more than 5000 in that job past the all-important six month period. Remote jobseekers are getting into real, meaningful work and off welfare,” Senator Scullion said.
“Engagement levels have risen from 7 per cent in July 2015 at the conclusion of Labor’s failed Remote Jobs and Communities Programme, to 70 per cent in April 2017.
“However, more can be done to make sure the work for the dole arrangements under the Community Development Program are encouraging welfare recipients to make a contribution to their community and transition into work.
“The Coalition Government understands the importance of transitioning job seekers into work and we are committed to ensuring every opportunity for employment is pursued in regional and remote Australia.”
Options considered in the discussion paper include options for local delivery to grow the remote labour market, provide more incentives to job seekers, give communities more control and greater decision-making provide an opportunity. The discussion paper also consider options for a wages-based scheme and the ability for participants to earn “top up” money – money that “tops up” their income support when they undertake paid work without affecting their income support payments.
The Remote Employment and Participation discussion paper is available at: www.pmc.gov.au/cdp. The closing date for submissions is 5:00pm EST, Friday 9 February 2018.