People right across Queensland are finding it more difficult to secure paid work as the Newman Government fails to deliver the jobs it promised it would, Shadow Treasurer Curtis Pitt said today.
Mr Pitt said regionally specific unemployment revealed the devil in the detail of last week’s shock 7% seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for Queensland with youth unemployment rates particularly high.
“Instead of investing in job creation in regional Queensland, Campbell Newman and the LNP insist on squandering taxpayer funds to promote its asset sales regime at the same time as slashing funding to TAFE training programs,” he said.
“What we’re seeing is the 12-month average youth unemployment rate in places like Cairns hit 20.3%.
“That’s up from 19.7% just a year ago and 11% in March 2012.
“The overall 12-month average unemployment rate for Cairns is still sitting around 8% and is long way from the 4% Campbell Newman promised.
“With youth unemployment so high, it’s clear that Tim Nicholls has lost control of the unemployment rate and has no plan for job creation.
“Queensland communities are crying out for jobs and the LNP is more interested in itself and spending taxpayer funds on self-indulgent advertising than helping Queenslanders.
“The LNP seems to be gambling everything on forcing unwanted asset sales upon Queenslanders but proceeds from asset sales won’t flow for up to five years.
“That’s a long time to wait for a job if you can’t pay the bills today.
“The LNP’s focus is on a plan for asset sales when their focus should be on a plan for jobs.”
Mr Pitt said youth unemployment had been identified at the G20 Summit as one of the major social threats around the globe.
“I read reports of comments by the chair of the G20 Youth Summit, Holly Ransom, who says youth disengagement was a problem for all G20 nations and could mean coming generations had a poorer quality of life than current ones,” Mr Pitt said.
“All governments have an obligation to do all they can to ensure that doesn’t happen. The figures Ms Ransom quoted were quite alarming — 75 million people under 25 unemployed across the globe.
“While Australia and Queensland have a relatively small share of that bigger figure, we still need to act so that young people believe they have a future and do not become disengaged and disconnected from their communities.”
More information about Labor’s jobs policies can be found here.