submitted 5 months ago by vividspecter@lemm.ee to c/australia@aussie.zone
top 13 comments
sorted by: hot top controversial new old
[-] brisk@aussie.zone 37 points 5 months ago

The Jobseeker program has always been about punishing the poor. The sudden raise in payments and dropping mutual obligations when "normal" people were ending up on Jobseeker during covid was a blatant demonstration of that.

[-] DogMuffins@discuss.tchncs.de 20 points 5 months ago

Here's an idea... why don't we just let people who don't want to work just stay home and collect the dole (or UBI).

It doesn't take a sociologist to understand why a long term unemployed person might be reluctant to get a job at maccas.

Resilience training ain't helping anyone.

[-] TheBananaKing@lemmy.world 13 points 5 months ago

Centrelink's entire MO is degrading and humiliating its clients and making their lives worse, in the hope that this will make them go away.

[-] joannaholman@aus.social 2 points 5 months ago

@TheBananaKing @vividspecter @ajsadauskas the last two times I was job hunting Centrelink absolutely made it worse. I wasted so much time on jumping through their hoops and spent money I couldn’t afford to spare travelling to useless things they made me do

[-] Nonameuser678@aussie.zone 9 points 5 months ago

Ok can I just state the obvious here that these roles require no tertiary qualifications. These people are in no way qualified to be administering any type of resilience course. They're not qualified to be working with these populations, period. Letting unqualified people fiddle around inside people's heads is no different than letting a regular person on the street perform surgery, it's incredibly harmful.

[-] autotldr@lemmings.world 4 points 5 months ago

This is the best summary I could come up with:

But welfare advocates say such courses are “social eugenics” which “promote isolating people in poverty from their families”, and don’t help them find suitable work.

“They also made us do a resilience survey, the questions on that were … ‘I’m grateful for the simple things, family, having enough to eat’,” and “spirituality or a belief in God plays an important role in my life.”

Esher House markets itself as using the “same model of change as smoking cessation” to help jobseekers find work, though it does not elaborate on what this means.

In a 2021 YouTube video, Esher House founder, Darren Coppin, who no longer works with the company, said their “academically validated” three-minute survey showed only one-third of “long term un-employed” are “genuinely committed to re-entering the workforce”.

Coppin says the survey can “segment between workers and shirkers” and that it shows “jobseekers … reflect research from the late 60s on something called learned helplessness”.

“DES providers may choose to use a range of assessment, goal setting and intervention tools, such as Esher House, to assist jobseekers.

The original article contains 1,230 words, the summary contains 178 words. Saved 86%. I'm a bot and I'm open source!

[-] morry040@kbin.social 4 points 5 months ago

I would love to see the overlap between the courses taught and the recognised skills gaps that we have in Australia (referenced as the basis for why we import so much overseas skilled labour). According to the migration reporting, chefs are the third highest skillset imported, so I would think that cooking classes would be a useful course for jobseekers...


[-] randomthin2332@lemmy.world 4 points 5 months ago

Was in Centrelink, the courses are typically "how to write a resume" or "how to do a job search", typically something quite generic and usually simple as it needs to cover all walks in life.

You typically aren't told that you can sometimes apply for actual courses because it seems like their goal/kpi is based on getting any job asap not on you studying for the next 6 months.

[-] princessnorah@lemmy.blahaj.zone 3 points 5 months ago* (last edited 5 months ago)

Okay, I’m not defending anything here but I need to call you and @randomthin2332@lemmy.world out for a second. A chef is not the same thing as a cook. Chef’s are responsible for all of the logistics of running a kitchen. They are responsible for creating the product; organising suppliers; portioning & costing each serving; budgeting for, interviewing and hiring the rest of the kitchen staff; pricing each meal to account for these costs with a reasonable profit margin; managing the kitchen staff; maintaining food safety standards, including mandatory logs; running the kitchen during service most nights of the week, on top of prepping & cooking. You generally have a Head & Sous Chef in most kitchens who occupy managerial roles. You might have another chef or two underneath them depending on the size of the kitchen. Then below them you have Cooks, whose job is to only focus on the hands-on aspects of preparing and cooking the food. You’re following someone else’s recipes and plating it to their guidelines.

“Cooking classes” or “6 month courses” will not give someone the skills to be a chef. It takes ~2yrs of study or a ~3yr apprenticeship to become qualified. What you’re both suggesting would only qualify someone to work as a cook, and there’s already a huge surplus in the industry thanks to covid. There are also genuine, tangible reasons why a business might want to hire a chef from overseas with specific culinary experience.

But besides all that, from my personal experience working in kitchens, I think this is a terrible idea. The woman at the start of the article is in the disability stream of Jobstart, as are a lot of people in the “long-term unemployed” category. She either doesn’t quite meet the requirements or, more likely, can’t afford the specialists required to meet Centrelink’s evidentiary burden. I’m on the DSP now, and while the condition I have is a genetic one, I strongly believe it was exacerbated by spending my career working as a chef. A very short career I’ll add. It is a much more physically demanding job than people give it credit for.

Why not just look internally at industry demand instead? On the topic of disability, there is a shortage of skilled support workers in that industry. I have some capacity to work, and because of my age, need to engage with a DES. I’ve been trying to get one to organise a community support certificate for over 2 years. I have a license and I’m good with admin. But instead, every one of them has tried to push me to renew my food safety cert and just “get a job in a café” because of my chef qual. Which, besides every other reason it’s a terrible idea, would have massively increased my chances of getting covid when I’m high-risk and still need regular boosters.

[-] Ilandar@aussie.zone 2 points 5 months ago

Does anyone know if Australia's mutual obligations were inspired by the model used in the US? I was listening to an episode of Reveal about work requirements in their welfare system and it was eerily similar. If not for the accents, you barely would have been able to tell the difference. It had all the same similarities: private companies full of unqualified staff, useless and condescending "training" that doesn't help people at all, job "providers" claiming all the credit for progress people made on their own, etc.

[-] ajsadauskas@aus.social 7 points 5 months ago* (last edited 5 months ago)

@Ilandar @vividspecter The short answer is yes. A lot of Australia's mutual obligation system was created by the Howard government, copying what Bill Clinton was doing in the US, and Tony Blair in the UK.

But it was also underpinned by the same neoliberal ideology as the US and the UK.

Basically, up until the late 1970s and early 1980s, Australia's official government policy was to have full employment. It was a minor scandal when unemployment skyrocketed to around 3% under Malcolm Fraser.

Especially after the oil shocks that followed the Suez Canal crisis, inflation was running quite high through the late '70s and early '80s.

To try to curb this high inflation, the US, UK, and Australia all adopted a range of neoliberal economic policies advocated by people like Milton Friedman and Friedrich Hayek.

The idea was that if everyone had a job, when inflation rose, workers would demand higher wages, and those wages would put further pressure on inflation, creating a cycle.

So one of the main ways the Hawke Labor government sought to stop this inflation cycle was by stopping wage growth.

As part of this policy shift, The Australian government walked away from the idea of guaranteeing full employment.

As part of a set of policies called the Accord, Hawke and the unions basically agreed to wage increases below the rate of inflation, in exchange for the introduction of Medicare.

The Reserve Bank got an independent board that would raise Interest rates if inflation got above 2-3%.

Importantly, if unemployment rates ever fell too low, the Reserve Bank would see it as an inflationary risk, and have to raise interest rates to slow the economy (which increases unemployment) to stop inflation.

So instead of seeking full employment, the idea that there's a "natural rate of unemployment" (as economists call it) became part of our economic system.

But, instead of properly explaining to the public that there was inevitably going to be this natural rate of unemployment, governments from Hawke and Keating onwards instead blamed the victims and called them "dole bludgers".

In the early '90s, the Keating government followed this up by bringing in a limited form of work for the dole as part of his Working Nation policy.

Around this time, in the US, Bill Clinton, and in the UK, Tony Blair, brought in tough new welfare policies. They were built around mutual obligation.

In the late '90s and early 2000s, the Howard government followed in the footsteps of these crackdowns and made mutual obligation a core part of the Australian welfare system.

He also privatised a lot of the old Commonwealth Employment Service, outsourcing its training services to private "Jobs Network" providers. What was left over became Centrelink.

If you're interested, there's a lot more details about how mutual obligation came about under Howard here: https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2022/jan/01/where-mutual-obligation-began-john-howards-paradigm-shift-on-welfare

And there's also in this government research paper from 1999: https://aifs.gov.au/research/family-matters/no-54/welfare-reform-britain-australia-and-united-states #auspol

[-] vividspecter@lemm.ee 2 points 5 months ago

Thanks for the detailed comment and links. I knew about the general neoliberal consensus of the 80s and 90s and the increasing stigmatizing of welfare, but not the connection with mutual obligations between the US, UK, and Australia.

Also explains part of the motivation behind the Abbott/Hockey 2014 budget with its aggressive attacks on welfare, particularly welfare for the young.

[-] Ilandar@aussie.zone 1 points 5 months ago

Thank you for the detailed answer, I will definitely check out the provided reading.

this post was submitted on 29 Nov 2023
34 points (90.5% liked)


3345 readers
190 users here now

A place to discuss Australia and important Australian issues.

Before you post:

If you're posting anything related to:

If you're posting Australian News (not opinion or discussion pieces) post it to Australian News


This community is run under the rules of aussie.zone. In addition to those rules:

Banner Photo

Congratulations to @Tau@aussie.zone who had the most upvoted submission to our banner photo competition

Recommended and Related Communities

Be sure to check out and subscribe to our related communities on aussie.zone:

Plus other communities for sport and major cities.



Since Kbin doesn't show Lemmy Moderators, I'll list them here. Also note that Kbin does not distinguish moderator comments.

Additionally, we have our instance admins: @lodion@aussie.zone and @Nath@aussie.zone

founded 11 months ago