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Debt debacle is a perfect storm

11 January 2017
Innovation Aus.com

Shadow Human Services minister Linda Burney has accused the Minister responsible for the Centrelink debt recovery debacle of “going into hiding” over the issue as an independent investigation into the process has been announced.
Ms Burney says that Minister for Human Services Alan Tudge has returned from holidays but has not addressed the issue, leaving it to the department to respond to the barrage of public criticism.

Centrelink data system to be ‘refined’

12 January 2017
The Australian

Centrelink’s controversial data-matching program will be ­“refined”, as the Turnbull government tries to deflect mounting political pressure from welfare groups and Labor for it to be suspend­ed.
The Australian Council of Social­ Service yesterday joined the federal opposition in calling for a halt to the scheme and an inde­pendent review, declaring that the automated debt-recovery prog­ram was treating current and past Centrelink recipients “like second­-class citizens”.

Note to Centrelink: Australian workers’ lives have change

11 January 2017
The Conversation

Centrelink’s new automated data-matching system is a source of ongoing controversy. It has resulted in a significant increase in the number of current and former welfare recipients assessed as having been overpaid and required to repay debts.
But debt problems do not really appear to be the fault of IT failure or the inappropriate use of big data. Rather, they appear to reflect an over-simplistic application of policy to the complexity of workers’ lives in a flexible labour market.

The human face of Centrelink debt debacle

6 January 2017
Anthony Albanese MP, Labor Member for Grayndler

Today I have joined with victims from my electorate of Grayndler to speak out about of the Turnbull Government’s Centrelink debt debacle.
Over the Christmas and New Year period I have been inundated with calls from constituents distressed because they have been issued debt notices and threats of debt recovery action for debts that they never incurred.
Thousands of people with disability, students, pensioners and people recovering from life threatening illnesses are being told by the Turnbull Government that the onus is on them to prove that they have not acted fraudulently.

Even doctors are getting screwed by Centrelink

11 January 2017
Herald Sun

Doctors from top Australian universities say they too were hit with erroneous Centrelink debt notices — and even they can’t seem to fix the mistakes.
Darren O’Connell, who has a PhD in economics and lectured at Curtin University, told news.com.au he has tried eight times since November to get his inaccurate debt removed from the system, but the letters keep coming.


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