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Articles on Work for the dole

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The government’s new plan to help young people gain employment won’t work for those who are severely disadvantaged. Maureen Barlin/Flickr

Extra steps required to ensure jobs plan delivers for young people

The success of the government’s new youth employment plan will depend on how its used by services, employers and young people alike.

VIDEO: Michelle Grattan on work for the dole

Professorial Fellow Michelle Grattan and University of Canberra Deputy Vice-Chancellor - Research Frances Shannon discuss the week in politics including the inquiry into asylum seeker children in detention…
Immigration Minister Scott Morrison has been the subject of calls to get asylum seeker children out of detention centres and into the community. AAP/Nikki Short

Grattan on Friday: Government must be held to account for what’s happening to children in detention

Two characteristics of this government are that it regularly overreaches and that where possible it shies away from transparency and accountability. Very different issues in the news this week highlight…
The government incentivises workers to relocate for a job, but is it incentivising the right workers? Faisal Akram/Flickr

Moving for work: not the panacea the government seeks

As a policy response to unemployment and structural change, incentives for workers to relocate in search of work have been pushing higher up the policy agenda. This has been the trend since the World Bank’s…
Anyone who imagines most job seekers have it easy probably hasn’t been out of work recently. Flickr/Florian Simeth

Ten job seekers per vacancy: a reality check on welfare overhaul

It turns out that the policies for under 30s in the federal budget in May were a precursor to a much wider set of changes affecting unemployed people across the board. These are just now coming to light…
Business leaders would prefer to align job skills with labour shortages. Image sourced from

The B20, job creation and the importance of being human

The B20 business leaders meeting this week in advance of November’s G20 summit play an important role in advising on what to do about those intractable global issues of economic growth and job creation…
While social services minister Kevin Andrews focuses on welfare spending data, there is precious little evidence for the efficacy of his policy approach. AAP/Alan Porritt

When job seekers outnumber jobs 5 to 1, punitive policy is harmful

The prime object of welfare reform should be to increase the well-being of people rather to reduce public expenditure. Good policy should be able to achieve both goals over the longer term. Too many current…
The probability of receiving a work for the dole pilot is much higher in non-marginal electorates, regardless of the level of actual youth unemployment. AAP/Julian Smith

Safe seats are more likely to have a work for the dole pilot

In July, the federal government will begin a series of pilot programs for its work for the dole scheme across Australia. All job seekers aged 18 to 30 who have been unemployed for more than a year and…
More than one-third of unemployed people are aged 15 to 24, a critical period in their lives. luxorphoto/Shutterstock

Unemployment is hitting youth hard: this is what we should do

Australia came out of the global financial crisis better than most industrialised countries, but did not escape altogether. With a weaker economy, the unemployment rate rose from about 4% to 6% between…
While Australia takes centre stage as this year’s G20 host, some of Joe Hockey’s budget policies are on the group’s ideological fringes. AAP/Daniel Munoz

As G20 host, our welfare policy is exposed to an unflattering light

Australia is hosting the G20 this year and showcasing to the world its approach to welfare policy: deny young people income support for up to six months and instead make more food vouchers available. This…
Policy measures have failed to understand why unemployed and disaffected youth are the way they are. Shutterstock

Regressive measures won’t help youth into work or training

The 2014 federal budget implemented a so-called crackdown on what Minister for Social Services Kevin Andrews calls young people who are content to “sit on the couch at home and pick up a welfare cheque…
Treasurer Joe Hockey warned Australians that ‘the age of entitlement is over’ – a promise that certainly came true for young Australians in the federal budget. AAP/Lukas Coch

Young people are now on the edge of our reconfigured welfare state

The 2014-15 federal budget continues the deconstruction of Australia’s post-war welfare state. In fact, the budget takes it a step further, particularly for the young. People under the age of 30 will now…
The government plans to re-introduce work for the dole, but does it work? Shutterstock

Work for the Dole doesn’t work – but here is what does

The Work for the Dole program could again become a core element of welfare policy for the unemployed in Australia, but there is a considerable body of evidence which shows it is unlikely to help people…
Moving some sole parents onto the lower Newstart payments has pushed up the numbers. Alan Porritt/AAPIMAGE

Is ‘unsustainable’ welfare growth really being driven by Newstart?

Social services minister Kevin Andrews has targeted the Disability Support Pension and Newstart, the main payment for the unemployed, for reform, branding the current level of welfare as unsustainable…
Single parents’ protests last year at being transferred to Newstart were ignored, and the evidence suggests the move made it harder to get suitable work to support their families. AAP/Paul Miller

An 800,000-plus jobs gap between ‘welfare to work’ and reality

The major missing factor in debates on cutting welfare spending – as has been flagged by social services minister Kevin Andrews – is the limited and falling demand for labour. Labour market figures give…
Tony Abbott is pitching to the longterm unemployed in his new initiative. AAP/Alan Porritt

Incentives to get people off the dole, and on the move

Long term unemployed young people could receive up to $6500 if they held down a job for two years, under an initiative announced by Tony Abbott today. Under a job commitment bonus payment people aged 18…
Workplace Relations Minister Bill Shorten has agreed to examine Newstart rates after ruling out a raise to the dole earlier this week. AAP

Down and out, and on the dole: why the Newstart Allowance needs a raise

Why do we have welfare policies that create unnecessary poverty? Despite a multitude of reports, submissions, public pleas and other advocacy on the problems of Newstart (NSA) recipients, the government…

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