BILL SHORTEN SHADOW MINISTER FOR THE NDIS SHADOW MINISTER FOR GOVERNMENT SERVICES MEMBER FOR MARIBYRNONG
SAVE OUR CENTRELINK
The Morrison Government has been secretly closing down Centrelink shopfronts around the nation.
They have been doing this without communicating to the public and with such haste and secrecy even Cabinet Ministers have been caught by surprise.
From Mornington and Newport in Victoria to Newcastle and Tweed Heads in NSW, local communities are waking up in shock to find their Centrelink shuttered, merging or under threat.
The Government are not informing the public of these plans and are leaving jobseekers, the needy, and vulnerable Australians out in the cold.
Just how many other Centrelinks are in the Government’s sights?
Government Services Minister Stuart Robert must now come clean on the extent of his national Centrelink closure plan - or commit to maintaining all current Centrelink shopfronts.
These face to face dealings with real people are an essential, vital and valued public service.
The Centrelink staff are doing their best but they are being undermined from above.
These closures are a slap in the face to older Australians who paid tax all their lives and may want to talk to a real person about issues with their Age Pension.
They are a slap in the face to men and women who served this nation with valour and now receive the Veterans Pension.
They are a slap in the face to people with disabilities and many others who still see Australia as a network of communities rather than just a barren digital marketplace.
Stuart Robert decided to close the Mornington and Newport Centrelinks with no warning - even taking his Cabinet colleague Greg Hunt who opposes the Mornington closure by surprise. In NSW a Centrelink in Newcastle is on the chopping block, there is a merger planned in Tweed Heads, and there is speculation about further changes in other locations.
From Robodebt to the $4.6b ripped from the NDIS we know whenever this Government gets in financial trouble it robs from the vulnerable.
But it must quit this reckless plan to rob communities of their social security hubs.
That’s why local MPs and communities across the nation will rally behind the call #SaveOurCentrelink to stop this terrible act of civic vandalism