House debates

Thursday, 3 September 2020

Constituency Statements


12:07 pm

Photo of Milton DickMilton Dick (Oxley, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

Yesterday was the darkest day in the Australian economy in decades. One million Australians don't have a job and 400,000 Australians are joining them by Christmas. Yet the Morrison government still has no jobs plan. The numbers won't be able to do justice to the human cost of this recession. This Morrison government recession destroys jobs and will destroy opportunities for real people and real communities. The seven per cent quarterly GDP slump was also more than three times worse than the previous biggest fall of two per cent in June 1974. When Australians need support, this government has continued to leave them behind. Instead of a jobs plan, the Prime Minister and Treasurer want to wind back JobKeeper, cut wages, cut super and, worst of all, freeze the pension, if you can believe that during a global pandemic.

I'm fearful that the Prime Minister cannot solve this recession, because he has no plans that are proven to ease the burden on Australian businesses and families. They need real solutions and a plan for how we are going to get back to prosperity. The Morrison government's inaction is only going to make the recession deeper and unemployment queues longer, and this is going to leave more Australians behind. Businesses, workers and families are counting on this government to come through with a plan to promote growth, protect and create jobs and set Australia up for the recovery. This is simply not happening.

In my electorate of Oxley, 12,297 people are on JobSeeker. 6,250 people are on JobKeeper. The total number of people on JobSeeker and JobKeeper in the Oxley electorate is 18,547. Every person has a story and every single person matters. Over the past few months, I've visited many local businesses in my community and I've sat down with small-business owners who have been stuck in a holding pattern, unable to offer work, unable to operate their businesses as they used to and unsure of what their economic future looks like for the families that they need to support. Those 18,547 people are not just statistics; they are real people with families to support, and now they are getting further cuts to their businesses and incomes. We must avoid at all cost a lost generation of Australians who are being sacrificed in the worst recession in almost a century. It's time the federal government stopped blaming everyone, stopped the slogans and started delivering for all Australians.