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Audit just a 'rubber stamp' for job cuts

ACTU President Ged Kearney.

ACTU President Ged Kearney. Photo: Arsineh Houspian

The union movement says the federal government's commission of audit is determined to cut jobs and services by rubber stamping the Coalition's ideological approach.

The ACTU's submission to the commission claims the body is rushing its work and appears to have a favourable view on outsourcing.

The audit is based on false assumptions and could result in higher costs and lower quality of services, ACTU president Ged Kearney said.

''Abbott's razor gang is out to cut jobs, cut services and hand it all over to their big business mates,'' she said.

The submission argues there has not been a significant expansion in the size of Commonwealth expenditure or revenues as a proportion of the economy.

It says the commission's terms of reference make the false implication that the Commonwealth has not been ''living within its means'' and that no efforts have been made to pay down debt.

It also says the commission's target - to achieve savings sufficient to deliver a surplus of 1 per cent of GDP before 2023-24 - is already happening.

The ACTU is damning in its criticism of any push towards privatisation and outsourcing of government services.

It says it is difficult to find evidence to support the assumption that private firms are more efficient and cost-effective than the public sector in operating and delivering public services.

''In the absence of transparent evidence-based recommendations, the commission will invite the suspicion that it exists merely to rubber-stamp pre-existing preferences for private-sector ownership and provision,'' the submission says. ''This will undermine public trust in the policy process and be likely to generate considerable opposition to changes in government activities that appear to be driven by ideology rather than evidence.''

Ms Kearney said the federal government intended to follow the British ''Big Society'' concept that she said caused a massive rise in unemployment, privatisation, outsourcing and drastically pared down public services.

''We've already seen it in Queensland where the Newman government's own razor gang cut jobs and cut public health and social services,'' she said.

"This isn't about the future of public finances or the needs of the Australian community, it's about the interests of big business, at the expense of families and communities around the country.

"The community expects the government to spend our taxes wisely and provide quality, accessible services that meet the needs of those that use them, not to hand the job over to big business to make a profit.

"Australians can see this for what it is - Mr Abbott driven by ideology once again and backing his big business mates at the expense of ordinary, hardworking Australians.''

15 comments so far

  • Same old boring lines from ACTU. They have no fresh ideas for current economy climate and they don't want to hear others' ideas.

    Commenter
    Dscoresby
    Date and time
    November 26, 2013, 10:03AM
    • It is definitely not the job of the ACTU to run the country. Nor is it their job to tell the government how to run the country. But they do have a role in evaluating decisions and policies in regard to how those policies and decisions affect their members!

      Am glad to see that Ged Kearney is doing her job and doing it well!

      Commenter
      EM
      Date and time
      November 26, 2013, 10:49AM
    • It is definitely not the job of the ACTU to run the country. Nor is it their job to tell the government how to run the country. But they do have a role in evaluating decisions and policies in regard to how those policies and decisions affect their members!

      Am glad to see that Ged Kearney is doing her job and doing it well!

      Commenter
      EM
      Date and time
      November 26, 2013, 12:21PM
    • I'm no unionist but great point EM.

      Commenter
      JimP
      Date and time
      November 26, 2013, 3:10PM
  • Could someone please tell me WHY we need a Government department for " THE STATUS OF WOMEN " .

    Staffed no doubt by a bunch of Feminazis ,-

    Questions :

    1) How many useless public servants in this department ?
    2) Cost to the taxpayer of this outrageous profligacy ?
    3) Is it staffed by friends of Gillard & Anne Summers ?
    4) Why no corresponding department for " THE STATUS OF MEN "

    Whatever the cost ,-place the money towards a gift to the Salvation Army

    Commenter
    HARRY JENKINS
    Location
    ARMADALE
    Date and time
    November 26, 2013, 10:37AM
    • How do you know that they are getting paid?

      Commenter
      Johnny
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      November 26, 2013, 3:51PM
  • I cant think of too many things which have been privatised and are now better than they were when they were government run..

    Commenter
    Johnny
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    November 26, 2013, 10:39AM
    • The Government of Singapore invites University Graduates to apply for senior positions in the Civil Service ,- which explains the unbelievable success of the Island State .
      Australia scrapes the bottom of the educational barrel when employing ' Public Servants "

      My Mother ( Bless Her Wisdom ) said to me when I was a young lad :- " Study hard Son ,otherwise you will finish up in the employ of the Government "

      Just look at the Union dominated Shorten Team ,- what a bunch of Scrubbers & Fishwives

      Commenter
      HARRY JENKINS
      Location
      ARMADALE
      Date and time
      November 26, 2013, 5:39PM
  • Ged Kearney is just the soft feminine face put forward by the nasty men at the ACTU. She thinks that one day they will let her have a seat in federal parliament. No Ged, the nasty men want that for themselves. Be a good girl now Ged.

    Commenter
    The Inconvenient Truth
    Date and time
    November 26, 2013, 10:48AM
    • These audit commissions have always been a joke. Government is elected - appoints commission of croneys to audit and find ways to save money - commission makes recommendations in line with government policy/election promises - if not, government does what it wants in any case !! Oh, and thanks commission for their hard work and input.
      The 5 members of the committee are being paid up to $1500 a day for their work on the commission $7500 a day x how many days? Here's how to cut spending - don't have an audit commission. When a party is elected to government, one would think that they already have their strategies sorted, so why the need for a 'commission' to tell them what they already know? Waste of time and money, but I suppose it gives some form of 'independent' reinforcement to decisions already made.

      Commenter
      Dee2
      Date and time
      November 26, 2013, 11:05AM

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