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Centrelink debt letter surge to resume as government promises tweaks to the system

11 January 2017

Centrelink will resume posting controversial debt recovery letters to thousands of Australians, as Human Services Minister Alan Tudge has defended efforts to recoup incorrect welfare payments and denied the agency made fundamental errors.
Standard procedures saw a halt to initial letters being sent to welfare recipients on December 3 last year, but thousands of Australians have reported receiving debt demands over the Christmas and New Year period, including some for tens of thousands of dollars.

Ombudsman to probe Centrelink in wake of debt recovery debacle

9 January 2017
ZD Net

The Commonwealth Ombudsman Colin Neave has opened an investigation into the Centrelink automated debt recovery system that has come under fire for sending some letters demanding money repayment in error to welfare recipients.
A spokesperson for Neave told ZDNet the Ombudsman is aware of the concerns raised about the automated data matching system used by Centrelink, and has commenced an own-motion investigation into the matter.

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.

MINISTER: There's nothing wrong with Centrelink debt letters so we're not stopping them

11 January 2017
Business Insider Australia

It seems Centrelink’s data-matching woes will continue, with the federal human services minister digging his heels in and refusing to scrap the controversial system.
Coalition minister Alan Tudge, who returned to work from holidays this week, told ABC Radio National this morning that the “system is working” and that the debt recovery process would continue.


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