Australian workers and the economic recovery face a huge set back as the Morrison Government’s cuts to JobKeeper edge closer.

With 921,800 people still unemployed and 3.5 million reliant on JobKeeper, cuts to JobKeeper and JobSeeker are short sighted and will cause lasting damage.

An additional 1.5 million Australians are underemployed, according to data released today by the ABS.

Reporting from the McKell Institute today shows that cuts to JobKeeper will rip $9.9 billion from the economy – at a time when the Government should be spending more to help working people back into secure jobs and lift the economy out of recession they are cutting to protect the budget bottom line.

Now more than six months into the greatest public health and economic crisis in a century, we still have no comprehensive national economic reconstruction plan from the Morrison Government.

It is essential that we take the opportunity presented by this recovery to create secure jobs and address Australia’s unacceptably high levels of insecure employment, which have left millions vulnerable during the pandemic.

Quotes attributable to ACTU President Michele O’Neil:

“We need leadership from the Morrison Government. We need a national economic reconstruction plan which will lay out the way forward and use strong government investment to create the secure jobs we need.

“We have 921,800 people out of work, 1.5 million underemployed and 3.5 million who are reliant on JobKeeper. Working people need the Morrison Government to continue the stimulus, and provide certainty about what comes next.

“We are still in the middle of this crisis and the Morrison Government is already trying to cut vital supports for working people and the unemployed. If you don’t protect working people they cannot protect the economy.

“We cannot slump back into the same spiral of insecure work and low wage growth. This recovery is an opportunity to improve the quality and security of jobs.”