House debates

Thursday, 31 May 2018

Statements by Members

Public Service Employment

1:48 pm

Photo of Gai BrodtmannGai Brodtmann (Canberra, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Assistant Minister for Cyber Security and Defence) Share this | | Hansard source

The Turnbull government has made a hobby out of cutting jobs in Canberra. First we had the member for New England's porkbarrelling, which was the relocation of the APVMA to Armidale. It was said at the time that this all-cost and no-benefit, blatant, shameless porkbarrelling was just the thin end of the wedge. Since then the budget has been released, and what do we hear about? More jobs are going from Canberra—98 jobs from six government agencies will be relocated, but not to regional areas. Eighty-two of these jobs will be relocated to a capital city. So, what message is the government sending here on decentralisation, particularly when 38 per cent of the public service is actually outside of Canberra. Sixty-three per cent of these jobs will be taken out of Canberra. The cuts to Canberra don't stop there.

Plastered across the front page of yesterday's Canberra Times is an article that says that up to 50 people with disabilities will lose their jobs at the Department of Human Services when two mail-sorting facilities close on 30 June. These are people with disability who have jobs. The government is cutting jobs for people with disability. There are people with disability who describe their jobs as their contribution to the world. As one mother said in the article, her daughter's job with the department is the reason she gets out of the bed in the morning. The government has decided they are easy targets. It's an absolute disgrace. I'm begging, for the sake of my community: hands off Canberra, hands off Public Service job cuts and hands off cuts to— (Time expired)