On the campaign trail it was notable just how many people talked to me about jobs lost, contracts coming to an end and not being renewed, and when there was work on offer the fact that it was in similar roles for a lot less money.
Shadow Minister for Employment Services and Workforce Participation Ed Husic today visited Fremantle to listen to concerns about local unemployment.
At a meeting with the Member for Fremantle Josh Wilson, Mr Husic heard how Business Foundations are addressing challenges faced by local jobseekers looking for work, especially for mature jobseekers.
The meeting comes on the back of yesterday’s employment figures showing more and more people are giving up looking for work. The underemployment rate has reached its highest rate on record at 9.3 per cent. Participation levels in the workforce are at 64.7 per cent – the lowest it has been in over a year.
“Older jobseekers are finding it especially hard to get new jobs and this is an issue that’s causing great community concern,” Mr Husic said.
“Frankly, it’s an issue not getting anywhere near enough attention in this country and its impact is deeply worrying.
“Business Foundations helped outline to Mr Wilson and I some of the things they are doing to tackle this challenge.”
“Business Foundations is a New Enterprise Incentive Scheme partner, a program that has been run by both Labor and Liberal governments to help unemployed people start their own business. I’m excited to see how it’s being applied on the ground in WA to see if there are things we can do to make it an even stronger program.”
Mr Husic prioritised his visit to Western Australia soon after being appointed to his Shadow Ministry role because of the impact of the state’s transition from the mining boom on the WA job market.
“With higher unemployment affecting the confidence of WA jobseekers, I’m particularly keen to learn how the job services network is helping secure work for Fremantle residents.
“This is part of a series of meetings I’m holding across Perth today, listening to groups about the way they’re working to get work for others.”
“In Fremantle the future of work is coming into sharp focus at a point when the number of full-time jobs in Western Australia has fallen for 18 consecutive months, a bleak run that we have not seen since the last recession in the early 1990s,” Josh Wilson said.
“On the campaign trail it was notable just how many people talked to me about jobs lost, contracts coming to an end and not being renewed, and when there was work on offer the fact that it was in similar roles for a lot less money.”