The recommendations made by the Senate Inquiry into the Centrelink Robo-debt debacle show a system which is causing unnecessary suffering, and it needs to be either radically reformed, and staffed appropriately, or scrapped.

Instead, the government is planning to roll out the program to target the disabled and the elderly starting from July 1.

Quotes attributable to ACTU President Ged Kearney:

“This report shows what everyone outside the government already knew – that we need to staff the DHS properly in order to ensure that programs like this don’t cause distress and suffering.”

“This program has nothing to do with improving service delivery, it’s driven by the government’s fanatical devotion to slashing staff in the public service. This is what happens when key departments are not staffed effectively.”

“We call on the Government to heed the recommendations of the inquiry, which heard testimony from dozens of people both inside the department and those targeted by the program.”

“The fact that this program is about to be turned loose on the disabled and the elderly is of great concern, and it would be a grave mistake not to address these recommendations.”

“The government should be trying to deliver better services, not simply slashing funding and expecting the few staff that are left to be able to clean up after them. It’s entirely unacceptable.”