Andrew Giles MP, Federal Member for Scullin, has expressed dismay at the cut of the Youth Connections program in the Abbott Budget.
Speaking in Parliament yesterday, Mr Giles MP said young people most at risk of falling into unemployment are being punished instead of supported by the Abbott Government.
“In the lead-up to last night’s budget, my office was inundated with correspondence and personal representations from people who were worried about the possibility that the Abbott Government would cut the Youth Connections program.
“I met with representatives of Youth Connections in April and was impressed, not just with the commitment of the staff, but the results this program has delivered.
“According to research conducted by the Youth Connections National Network, six months after exiting Youth Connections, 94% of young people were still engaged in education or employment.
“Despite this, the community’s worst fears were realised as last night’s budget of broken promises axed Youth Connections along with the Partnership Brokers and National Career Advice programs.
“These cuts show that the Abbott Government has no plan for Australian jobs, and that young people are not a priority of this Government.
“The Hume Whittlesea Youth Connections program has helped 45 young people each year to reconnect with education, training and employment.
“Youth unemployment is more than double the national average unemployment rate. Australia needs a plan for job creation, which must involve preventing youth unemployment.
Latest ABS data has youth unemployment for Melbourne’s north east region at 15.6%.