29 January 2023, Jessica Bahr, SBS News. Access the full article here.

TJ called an employment service provider for advice. They say an agent made jokes about suicide

Jobseeker TJ says they were left distressed after a phone call with an employment services provider to check up on mutual obligation requirements.

“They have the power to cut someone off payment at will, they have a lot of power to talk to their clientele in any kind of way, and people on JobSeeker aren’t treated like clients in because they’re poor and disadvantaged and have health problems,” he said.

TJ said they have been mistreated on multiple occasions.

“When you are a job seeker (it’s like) you are subhuman… I have been on and off Centrelink since I was maybe 16 years old, and they have never, ever helped.”

I asked if she was making a joke about my suicide attempt, which is in my file notes. She responded that she was.

– TJ Davis

Employment services survey

The Punishment for Profit report is based on hundreds of responses to surveys conducted by the Antipoverty Centre. This research is ongoing. If you are in Workforce Australia, Disability Employment Services or a similar program, we welcome any information you are able to share about your experiences.

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