Inquiry into the appropriateness and effectiveness of the objectives, design, implementation and evaluation of jobactive

Key points

The following presents the key areas of the YACSA response to the Inquiry:

  • Young people described a system that is often punitive, ineffective and unable to genuinely and meaningfully support them in the context of a weak job market.

  • Employment service providers were regularly characterised as a hindrance to job seeking efforts with some young people reporting they had achieved, personal, employment and training goals without (and sometimes despite) provider intervention.

  • Young people reported relatively low levels of service provision in each of the key functions of employment services, with only 18.5% of survey respondents reporting assistance with referrals to job vacancies.

  • There are concerns that outcome driven funding has led some providers to cut staff numbers, which has dramatically increased caseloads and has led to a significant decrease in the services delivered to clients. 

  • The requirements of mutual obligation are time and resource consuming, demoralise and frustrate young job seekers and act as a smokescreen for a weak employment market and other structural barriers to employment.  

  • For employment services to better serve young people, survey respondents have called for more one-on-one services that are respectful, compassionate, flexible, tailored to the personal circumstances and career goals of young people and cognisant of the current job market.