The disastrous failings of the Community Development Programme (CDP) in remote Australia have been criticised by Jobs Australia and the ANU, with reports released today that further highlight the programme is entrenching poverty and should be urgently overhauled.
“Ever since the CDP was introduced in remote Australia, the Australian Greens alongside the community have pointed out that the policy is harsh, unfair and discriminatory and will further entrench disadvantage.
“Jobs Australia have pointed out that financial penalties for job seekers in remote Australia are incurred 70 times more than non-remote regions. This is having real and dangerous consequences on the ground and is clear sign of policy failure.
“To apply work for the dole policies in remote Australia that are far more stringent than metro regions and apply far more to Aboriginal communities is discriminatory and should never have happened.
“Kids are not getting food on the table because the requirements are not appropriate for the circumstances and the programme is too bureaucratic. Communities have been disempowered and now the individual and broader remote communities are copping the brunt of poor policy making.
“It is time for the Government to say ‘we made a mistake’ when it comes to the CDP and relegate it to the policy dustbin.
“I urge the Government to go back to the drawing board and pursue policy in consultation with communities that supports vulnerable families rather than hurting them”.