Nationals Senator for Bendigo, Bridget McKenzie today slammed Lisa Chesters for her ill-informed rhetoric on the Bendigo jobs market.
Here are the facts that Lisa Chesters conveniently ignored:
There are a total of 7,700 businesses in Bendigo of which 97% are categorised as small business,with a staff of 20 or less.3,659 people work in Bendigo – half of that workforce is employed in a small business
Employment in Bendigo has increased slightly, by 400 (or 0.5 per cent) over the year to July
The unemployment rate in the region has been decreasing and is now 4.4 per cent which is below the national rate of 5.6 per cent.
The youth unemployment rate in the Bendigo has decreased over the last year, from 8.6 per
cent in July 2016, to 6.9 per cent in July 2017.
Between 1 July 2015 and 30 June 2017, jobactive providers have placed job seekers into more than 6,187 jobs in Bendigo.
Senator McKenzie said although the employment rate in Bendigo has increased this year,
it is still not good enough for people without a job who are looking for work.
“However for Lisa Chesters to suggest that the Government has been sitting on its hands
and doing nothing about creating a better jobs market in Bendigo is simply not
“Her assertion that the government must create jobs sounds like a manifesto out of Beijing
or Communist Russia.
“It is not government who creates jobs, but business which is demonstrated by the
figures that I have released today and that is why this government has been
focused on growing the economy across a range of industries.
“The Free Trade Agreements that we signed have local opportunities, Defence Industry
programs have billions of dollars in contracts that we have been making sure
local businesses have the opportunity to be involved in.
“That means more work for local manufacturers and more importantly, apprenticeship
opportunities for our young people locally.
“It is small business that underpins our local economy an area that the Labor Party
plans to tax heavily if ever it returns to government.
“That’s another thing Lisa Chesters forgot to mention today”, Senator McKenzie said.