Liberals’ youth unemployment plan: lure them into work for below minimum wage

Greens Employment spokesperson Adam Bandt MP today said he was concerned the Liberal’s youth Jobs PaTH program may breach international labour rights and will be asking the UN’s International Labour Organization to look at the program.

“The Liberals’ plan to tackle high youth unemployment is to lure them into work for below the minimum wage,” Mr Bandt said.

“This won’t provide secure and meaningful work for the 250,000 young people who are unemployed.”

“The Liberals’ policy will drive down wages for other workers and see employers burn and churn through young people.”

“Under this program, by not having to hire someone at the usual wage, employers could bank more per week than the young people they employ.”

“Young people are already under immense pressure. Housing is more and more unaffordable, student debts are higher and more young people are struggling to get reliable, well-paid work.”

“The gap between the super wealthy and everyone else is growing, as is inequality between generations.”

“The Greens do not accept that to get young people into work they need to be paid as little as $4 an hour, which is well below the minimum wage.”

“I will write to the International Labour Organization and ask them to look at the policy because it doesn’t stack up and may in fact breach labour rights.”

Greens spokesperson on youth Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said: "I have real concerns about the potential for exploitation in a program that links income support for young people to work for $4 an hour."

"Young people are already struggling to get ahead in Australia and this Budget has only made it harder."

Media contacts:

Adam Bandt – Adam Pulford, 0429 109 054
Sarah Hanson-Young – Noah Schultz-Byard, 0427 604 760