Jun 30, 2004

Devastating 5 year unemployment figures: NSW

DEVASTATING 5 YEAR UNEMPLOYMENT FIGURES: NSW

MEDIA RELEASE: Anthony Albanese – 30 June 2004

The Howard Government has failed to make a dent into levels of very long term unemployment. The problem is significantly worse today than it was in 1999.

Despite more than a decade of economic growth the numbers of very long term unemployed – those claiming benefits for more than 5 years – in New South Wales has increased by 56% to 39,990 jobseekers.

Across Australia the increase between 1999 and 2004 has been 68%. That translates to almost 51,500 more Australians condemned to poverty.

These are Howard’s forgotten people.

This data was provided by the Department of Family and Community Services in response to Questions on Notice submitted by Labor (Senate Question on Notice Nos. 2807, 2808 & 2809).

The Howard Government’s labour market programs, in particular its Job Network, are not working for long term and disadvantaged jobseekers.

While the Howard Government believes that forcing jobseekers to attend numerous meetings will lead to future employment opportunities, Labor recognises that without relevant skills and recent experience in a mainstream workplace the long term unemployed will continue to find it difficult convincing employers to take them on.

During a period of extended economic growth long term unemployment should be going down, not up. These figures are an indictment on the Howard Government’s policies and highlight once again their indifference to the most vulnerable people in our society.

The number of persons claiming Newstart Allowance for more than 5 years:

 

 

ACT

 

 

NSW

 

 

NT

 

 

QLD

 

 

SA

 

 

TAS

 

 

VIC

 

 

WA

 

 

AUSTRALIA

 

 

1999

 

 

759

 

 

25591

 

 

1185

 

 

12250

 

 

7632

 

 

3479

 

 

20269

 

 

4008

 

 

75173

 

 

2004

 

 

1153

 

 

39990

 

 

3607

 

 

23485

 

 

12518

 

 

6693

 

 

29929

 

 

9275

 

 

126650

 

 

Increase

 

 

51%

 

 

56%

 

 

204%

 

 

91%

 

 

64%

 

 

92%

 

 

47%

 

 

131%

 

 

68%