UNDEREMPLOYMENT: AN ISSUE IN THE ILLAWARRA

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NSW Shadow Treasurer, Ryan Park has come out swinging at recent statistics indicating the high level underemployment in NSW.

 

Mr Park, the Shadow Minister for the Illawarra has obtained data which reveals that underemployment has remained at all-time highs under the Berejiklian Government.

 

Mr Park says that the effects of high underemployment levels are being felt across the Illawarra, with the region known for having higher-than-average figures, calling on the Liberal Government to take action.

 

The ballooning underemployment rate can no longer be ignored in NSW, with people looking for work and people who can’t find enough work being overlooked by the State Government.

 

The number of people underemployed in NSW has reached record highs with 325,347 people working fewer than full-time hours - this is up 8,759 since the same time last year.

 

Underemployment remains at a high eight per cent – almost double that of the State’s unemployment rate, according to the latest ABS data.

 

The NSW Labor Opposition says the figures are evidence that many workers in NSW are not sharing in the promised economic benefits that Gladys Berejiklian touted as Treasurer and now Premier.

 

Compounding the pain, wage growth in NSW remains at 2.1 per cent, staying well behind the State’s inflation rate of 2.4 per cent.

 

Mr Park has said that underemployment is a particularly pressing issue in the Illawarra, as fewer job opportunities available, compared to Sydney, means that workers have to settle for fewer hours than they would like, or settle for jobs lower than their qualification level.

 

Quotes attributable to Shadow Treasurer Ryan Park

 

“The Berejiklian Government fails to acknowledge the huge problem of underemployment that exists in NSW and by doing so their Government ignoring a large part of the community.

 

“As families face higher electricity bills, higher transport fees and higher tolls – cost of living pressures will hurt those underemployed even more.

 

“The Premier likes to crow about how we are doing so well in NSW, but I doubt many people would agree with her.”

 

“The issue of underemployment is particularly pertinent in the Illawarra. Fewer job opportunities available down here means that people have to settle for jobs below their skill level, and for fewer hours than they would like.”

 

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