5 July 2022, Crikey, Cam Wilson. Access the full article here.

Australians who risk losing welfare payments if they don’t fulfil Workforce Australia’s requirements were unable to access the service at launch.

The rollout of the federal government’s new unemployment services program, Workforce Australia, has been derailed by technical issues, with some of the 750,000 Australians who must use the system or face losing their welfare payments unable to access the service. 

Monday marked the first official day of Workforce Australia, a refreshed scheme that replaced jobactive. The program ditches the current mutual obligations in favour of a Points Based Activation System (PBAS), an automated program that requires Australians receiving the JobSeeker payment to carry out tasks in order to receive their payments. 

With their means to pay rent or buy food on the line, welfare recipients who had been transferred into the Workforce Australia program tried to log into the new system — but many were unable to.

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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