MEDIA RELEASE - VILIFYING BLACKTOWN WON’T SOLVE UNEMPLOYMENT - 13 JUNE 2017

With Ed Husic MP and John Robertson MP

Today’s front page and article in The Daily Telegraph, labelling Blacktown as ‘Slacktown’, is nothing more than a cheap political shot by Malcolm Turnbull designed to vilify our community.    

It is a slap in the face to the hardworking residents of Blacktown that the Turnbull Government goes after the Blacktown community for political point-scoring by releasing misleading jobseeker figures.

The figures released by the Government are raw figures, and not adjusted for population, so it’s no surprise that the Blacktown postcode has a high rate.

While Malcolm Turnbull talks tough on unemployment, he has no plan to reduce joblessness, which is as high as during the height of the GFC.

In Blacktown in recent years, there have been employment programs working to address unemployment - programs such as Youth Connections and the Partnership Brokers. Despite the success of these programs, the Liberal Government cut their funding.

Another very successful program helping locals get work at the rapidly expanding Sydney Business Park at Marsden Park wasn’t given funding to continue either.

In addition to this, TAFE and vocational education has also been under attack by the State and Federal Liberal Government’s. TAFE funding has been slashed, whilst the Liberal Government has allowed dodgy providers to scam money out of vulnerable people trying to get the training they need to find a job.

With this Malcolm Turnbull’s agenda of cuts, it’s no wonder that people are finding it harder to get a job. 

Western Sydney needs a Government that is focussed on solving the systemic problems with unemployment, not one which releases misleading figures designed to demonise the community.

The people of Western Sydney deserve better than cheap political point-scoring from Malcolm Turnbull and The Daily Telegraph.

Quotes attributable to Michelle Rowland:

“With wages growth stagnant and not long term plan to address the unemployment rate in Blacktown of 7.2%, the people of Western Sydney are right to ask ‘Where are the ‘Jobs and Growth’ that were promised by Malcolm Turnbull?’,” Ms Rowland said.

“Malcolm Turnbull shouldn’t try to score political points off the backs of hardworking people of Blacktown,” Ms Rowland said.

Quotes attributable to Ed Husic:

“The Turnbull Government should apologise for slandering Blacktown by labelling the city as slack in the national media,” Mr Husic said.

“One of the main things not turning up to Work for the Dole is: jobs. Almost 90 per cent of people who participate in the program still don’t have full time work three months later. The Turnbull Government is responsible for this and they have no answers to fix it.”

“Instead of shaming Blacktown, the Turnbull Government should step up and fix their failing job programs.”

Quotes attributable to John Robertson:

“It’s disappointing to see, yet again, the media denigrating our vibrant community of Blacktown,” Mr Robertson said.