Longterm Unemployment

High unemployment contributing to CQ’s health woes

UnemploymentRockhampton doctor Hilary Mercer has spoken out about health issues in Central Queensland linking them to the region’s high rate of unemployment.

Dr Mercer shares his thoughts in a letter to the editor, which he has penned in response to a Morning Bulletin health report which showed a dire outlook for Rockhampton residents as compared to their Brisbane counterparts.

The Bulletin report was part of a Fair Go For Regional Australia campaign.

The “shocking CQ death rate” reported in the Bulletin needs to be put into perspective.

There are indeed increased incidences of obesity, smoking, alcoholism and suicide but readers should be made aware that this is much the same in other regional areas of the state compared with Brisbane.

There is an inference that if only we had improved health services, all would be well.

That is far from the case.

The problem is not a medical one but a social one in the form of a higher rate of unemployment.

Whether from disability, inability or sheer laziness, long term unemployment results in an increase in all the aforementioned conditions and it so happens that social recipients form a far greater percentage of the population in regional areas compared with the capital.

We could have a hospital on every street corner and make absolutely no difference to these statistics regardless of the noise made by social engineers.

Education is often touted as the answer to the problem but the truth is that every obese person knows they eat too much and every smoker and alcoholic understands the implications of their habit.

The things that will improve these statistics are to accept the unfashionable notion that the individual himself has to make life changing decisions, stronger efforts made to get people off social services and into employment (every doctor knows many people who could work but who choose not to) and perhaps the introduction of the unpopular idea that social services recipients should be given a credit card rather than cash which forbids the purchase of cigarettes, alcohol, gambling and maybe even fast foods.

The idea being that such “luxuries” should be earned rather than be available via the taxpayer.

It is ironic that on the same page of the Bulletin is a feature about the difficulty in accessing dental services.

One measure that would decrease the need for dental services would be to introduce fluoridation which Brisbane has but is forbidden by our city council because of the bleatings of the same sort of people who probably also don’t believe in childhood immunisation.

Never mind the advice of medical and dental authorities in all first world counties or that of the World Health Organisation. To read more click here.

The Australian Long-Term Unemployment Conference will be held on the 1-2 December 2016 in Brisbane. To express your interest in the Conference CLICK HERE.


Job ads stagnate but unemployment should hold steady: ANZ

imagesA widely-watched private index of job advertisements has shown demand for workers stagnating since late last year.

The ANZ job advertisements series recorded a 0.2 per cent rise in ads during March, led by a 0.4 per cent increase in online ads, offset by an 11.4 per cent slump in the now niche newspaper sector.

However, the relatively subdued March result has now dragged the more stable trend figure for job ads into the negative for the first time since October 2013.

Trend data showed job ads falling 0.2 per cent last month.

Overall, ANZ senior economist Justin Fabo said the trend has been pretty flat for several months now.

“The number of job ads has been broadly unchanged for four months now, signalling an easing in hiring intentions,” he wrote in a note on the data.

“To some extent this is unsurprising given the strong pace of jobs growth over much of 2015 and modest improvement in the unemployment rate”.

Unemployment to stay ‘within earshot of 5.75 per cent’

ANZ’s figures show that job ads are still up 10 per cent on levels seen a year ago, in seasonally adjusted terms.

Mr Fabo said a combination of global economic and financial market jitters early in 2016 and uncertainties around federal politics, such as the election timing, may have contributed to the recent caution in hiring new staff.

He added that volatility in the official Bureau of Statistics employment numbers has made the ANZ job ads measure more important as an indicator of the labour market.

“While the official figures show a modest fall in (measured) employment over the three months to February, this followed the fastest jobs growth over a three-month period since 2006,” Mr Fabo noted.

“Hiring is taking a breather, but we expect jobs growth to maintain enough momentum over the coming six months to keep the unemployment rate within earshot of 5.75 per cent.” To read more click here.

The Australian Long-Term Unemployment Conference will be held on the 1-2 December 2016 in Brisbane. To express your interest in the Conference CLICK HERE.


Premier heads north to discuss employment

ltu resoourcesMembers of the Premier’s job committee are meeting in Mackay this morning to discuss employment in Queensland to discuss the opportunity to develop a plan in the lead up to the State budget to minimise job losses in the resources sector moving forward.

More than 22,000 jobs have been lost in the resources sector in Queensland in the last two years. Jobs have mostly been lost in the Mackay region and this has an impact of SE Queensland and affects employment in Brisbane for people working in resource sector offices.

To find out more about the affects of this, in an ABC radio interview, Steve spoke to Chief Executive of the Queensland Resources Council Michael Roche and Mayor of Mackay Deirdre Comerford.

To listen to the ABC news interview CLICK HERE.


Mr Barry King from Ganamarr Consultants on jobs for Indigenous people and other at risk groups

Concurrent Session Chair: Mr Barry King, Director, Ganamarr Consultants

Concurrent Session Time: Monday 9 November, 4.34 – 5.04pm

Abstract: The PEOPLE Model: getting jobs for Indigenous people and other at risk groups              

The PEOPLE Model has been successfully applied over the last 20 years to Indigenous populations with 30% employment rates in various industries. These high employment rates have been achieved by identifying and overcoming barriers experienced by both the supply (employees) and demand (employers) sides of the labour market.

Indigenous people often have personal barriers which hinder their job prospects such as low self-esteem, poor mental and physical health and drug or alcohol problems. They also lack job ready skills such as no job experience, low education levels, no vocational qualifications and lack of knowledge of workplace practices. On the demand side, employers often lack an understanding of how education and employment programs operate as well as the problematics of working with multiple stakeholders. There is also widespread discrimination within employer organisations.

These barriers are often experienced across many other at risk groups.

The mechanisms of the PEOPLE Model will be demonstrated using the 3 year, $650M Northern Territory Indigenous Housing Project as an example. In this project over 900 Indigenous people started pre-employment training. Of these, 90% completed the course. And of those who completed the course, 90% got a job with nearly 30% placed in apprenticeships. This was equivalent to a 30% Indigenous employment rate.

This high employment rate was mainly due to the intense ground work completed in the first 3 stages of the model which prepared Indigenous people to become job ready and assist employers to provide a workplace culture which embraced Indigenous employees. The final three stages included the design and implementation of a Jobs Plan to ensure all job targets were delivered on time.

The PEOPLE Model brings together Indigenous people and employers providing employers with skilled and motivated Indigenous staff with long term career opportunities. The similarities of barriers experienced by Indigenous job seekers and other at risk groups means many of the mechanisms used in the PEOPLE Model can be applied across a broader at risk population.

For more information on the 2015 Australian Long-Term Unemployment Conference please click here.