CENTRELINK WAIT TIMES BLOW OUT AS LOCALS FEEL THE PINCH

Stephen Jones will take the stories of local residents to Federal Parliament today, highlighting the failures of the Government that have seen Centrelink wait times skyrocket. Continue reading

LABOR OPPOSES BILL TO CUT LOCAL SHIPPING JOBS AND WAGES

Stephen Jones has today called on the Federal Government to withdraw its plan to deregulate coastal shipping laws which could see the recently stricken Iron Chieftain replaced by a foreign flagged vessel and overseas crew. Continue reading

LABOR WILL GIVE MANUFACTURERS THE TOUGH ANTI-DUMPING PROTECTIONS THEY NEED

A Shorten Labor Government will protect Australian jobs by making it easier for local manufacturing firms to take effective action against the dumping of below cost foreign goods into Australia. Dumping is cheating and is a particular problem for Australia’s steel industry. The announcement by the United States of a 25 per cent tariff on imported steel from a number of other countries increases the threat of more steel being dumped in Australia, putting further pressure on an industry already feeling the impact of a glut of foreign steel production. Continue reading

COMMUNITY LEFT OUT IN THE COLD: LIBERALS CLOSE THE DOOR ON WARRAWONG CENTRELINK AND MEDICARE

Sharon Bird and Stephen Jones today slammed the Federal Liberal Government for refusing to listen to the local community in Warrawong, Port Kembla, Cringila, Lake Heights, Primbee, Kemblawarra and Berkeley who are angry at the Liberals decision to close the Warrawong Centrelink and Medicare office – effective from Monday, 30 July 2018. Shortly after hearing news of the proposed closure back in June, local Members Sharon Bird and Stephen Jones met with Human Services Minister, Michael Keenan, to let him know that the community needs the service and urge him to reconsider this decision. Continue reading

STATEMENT ON NINE/FAIRFAX MERGER

Labor notes the announcement that Fairfax Media and Nine Entertainment propose to merge their print, TV, radio and online businesses to create the largest single commercial media entity in Australia. According to reports, after nearly two centuries of writing the first draft of Australian history, the Fairfax name is about to disappear in one of the biggest media mergers in our history. Labor pays tribute to Fairfax and our thoughts are with the dedicated workers and their families facing change and uncertainty at this time. Continue reading

LABOR OUTLINES KEY PRIORITIES FOR REGIONAL MOBILES POLICY

Shadow Minister for Regional Communications, Stephen Jones MP, outlined Labor’s principles for expanding mobile coverage across regional Australia. A Shorten Labor Government would work to address the criticism of the Mobile Black Spot Program (MBSP) made by the Australia National Audit Office (ANAO),  Productivity Commission and Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) and work with experts, community and state and local governments to deliver better community outcomes. Continue reading

LABOR WILL ESTABLISH NBN SERVICE GUARANTEE

Labor will deliver a better deal for NBN consumers in Rockhampton with a plan to establish an NBN Service Guarantee that will set regulated timeframes and wholesale service standards for: Fault rectification Installations Missed appointments Labor’s Candidate for Capricornia, Russell Robertson, said problems with the NBN rollout were costing local businesses thousands of dollars. Continue reading

LABOR SLAMS CENTRELINK STAFFING CRISIS IN LISMORE

Shadow Minister for Regional Services, Stephen Jones MP today joined with Labor Candidate for Page Patrick Deegan in Lismore to condemn the Centrelink staffing crisis. Shadow Minister for Regional Services Stephen Jones said: “Figures show that Centrelink average call wait times for older Australians have blown out to 23 minutes and processing times for the age pension have increased to 49 days. Yet at the same time, Page MP Kevin Hogan is sitting by while more jobs are being cut from Centrelink offices like this one in Lismore. This is a disgrace.” Continue reading

SUDMALIS MUST COMMIT TO NO JOB CUTS AT BATEMANS BAY CENTRELINK

Labor is calling on Ann Sudmalis to protect over 150 public sector jobs at Batemans Bay’s Centrelink after it was revealed the Turnbull Government would axe 1,280 staff from across the Department. In the 2018 Budget, the Government revealed it would cut $300 million and 1,280 staff from Centrelink putting thousands of regional jobs at risk. Continue reading

TURNBULL GOVERNMENT NEEDS TO STOP DRAGGING ITS FEET

After two years of dragging their feet on fixing the holes in consumer protection, the Turnbull Government has, today, released its Consumer Safeguards Review. It shows the Government has the wrong priorities and continues to play catch-up. Continue reading