House debates

Monday, 26 October 2020

Statements by Members

JobKeeper Payment

4:09 pm

Photo of Lisa ChestersLisa Chesters (Bendigo, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

There's no dispute that JobKeeper has helped many businesses in keeping jobs, despite this government being dragged kicking and screaming towards a wage subsidy scheme. Since the introduction of JobKeeper 2.0, I've had the opportunity to speak to a few local businesses about how this new system is affecting them. Unfortunately, far too many workers are still missing out, and people who previously qualified now don't qualify.

One particular business, Holgate in Woodend, is both a restaurant and a brewing business. Unfortunately, the brewing side of the business is no longer eligible under the government's new rules, so 10 staff are now missing out on JobKeeper despite the fact that Victoria is still recovering from the COVID-19 crisis and hospitality is only now starting to reopen. On the other side of the business, most of their staff still qualify.

Another business that's been affected, and is disappointed that four of its staff now miss out, is the Barham Arms Hotel in Bendigo. They've said that the new changes have also made payroll incredibly difficult—something that this government just doesn't appreciate. Business is tough, and people are trying to do their best. All they look for in a government is one that understands and one that is working towards supporting these businesses, not making life harder.

Sitting suspended from 16:11 to 16:15