TURNBULL GOVERNMENT COMPLETELY INCOMPETENT IN MANAGING INCOME SUPPORT PAYMENTS

12 Jan 2018

The overpayment of $2.8 billion in income support according to reports today, shows yet again that the Turnbull Government is completely incompetent when it comes to managing Centrelink and has achieved nothing in spite of continued claims that they will fix overpayments.

Turnbull Government CompletEly incompetent in managing income support payments

 

The overpayment of $2.8 billion in income support according to reports today, shows yet again that the Turnbull Government is completely incompetent when it comes to managing Centrelink and has achieved nothing in spite of continued claims that they will fix overpayments.

 

The Conservatives have run a consistent campaign to demonise the most vulnerable Australians as a cover for this incompetence, rather than fixing the mess they have created at Centrelink.

 

The Department of Human Services has seen a merry-go-round of Ministers, with four ministers over the past four years. What have any of them delivered?

 

The total value of debts raised as a result of overpayments has risen by $1 billion since the Abbott-Turnbull Government took office.

 

The rise in overpayments comes after the Government has spent the better part of 2017 dealing with the fallout of its Robo-debt debacle, which saw 20,000 innocent Australians pursued over false or incorrect debts.

 

Last year 55 million calls went unanswered to Centrelink and average call wait times have increased.

 

The Government and its four ministers has spent its entire time in office ideologically obsessed with attacking staff and their conditions, resulting in diminished services and demoralised staff.

 

The Government slashed 1,200 jobs from the Department at the budget last year. It then announced it was outsourcing 200 jobs for a call centre in October to manage the backlog in missed calls and lengthy call wait times. 

 

The Government is attempting to privatise Centrelink by stealth.

 

Centrelink needs permanent, full-time staff, who are qualified and familiar with the often complex issues facing Australians who require income support.

 

The Abbott-Turnbull Government has nothing but contempt for vulnerable Australians.

 

Labor believes in a society that protects and invests in people. Labor believes in income support for Australians as and when they need it.

 

We don’t think that people who rely on our social security system should be demonised by the Turnbull Government.

 

Of course people who do the wrong thing and try to cheat the system should be made to repay the money - that’s only fair.

 

However every time the Turnbull Government gets involved in this area they stuff it up.

They must stop their campaign to demonise vulnerable Australians and fix their Centrelink mess, starting with adequate staffing.

 

FRIDAY, 12 JANUARY 2018