3 August 2022, Guardian Australia, Luke Henriques-Gomes. Access the full article here.

Employability course created by company related to job agency labelled a ‘waste of time, waste of resources’ by one jobseeker

A job agency referred people into an online course created by a related company that asked basic technology questions such as “click on the laptop” and “click on the USB port”, featured a literacy and numeracy test and was described by one participant as “offensive”.

The Catalyst course is provided by Australian Employment and Training Solutions (AETS), the training arm of the multinational services company, Asuria, and was created specifically for the pandemic while many face-to-face training courses could not take place.

While Asuria, which has more than $150m in job services contracts under the new Workforce Australia system, said the course was “optional”, one jobseeker insisted it had been compulsory for them to keep their welfare payments.

They’re paying someone to provide this course… It was a waste of time, waste of resources, it was offensive that I’m being asked to do this, and money is being spent on this which could be spent to help people in their chosen industries.

– Michael, forced into a bullshit course

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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