News

Jobs a key Budget issue for growth areas

30 April, 2021

The March 2021 JobSeeker and Youth Allowance figures show why jobs are such an important issue for people living in outer metro growth areas. The latest data underlines the NGAA’s call for the 2021 Federal Budget to focus on jobs and stronger local economies in growth areas.

Recent talk about getting the national jobless rate to less than 5% is very far from the reality in many outer metropolitan growth areas. Some Sydney, Melbourne and Perth outer suburbs have over 10% of their population (aged 15 – 64) receiving JobSeeker or Youth Allowance. Playford in Adelaide’s north is 16.5%. See the full breakdown.

The comparison with the March 2020 figures shows how much the COVID-19 economic downturn has impacted some of these areas, with a 3% increase in people needing JobSeeker/Youth allowance across NGAA member areas. 

NGAA wants the 2021-22 Federal Budget to set out an equitable allocation of job stimulus and infrastructure funding that seizes the opportunity for the whole nation to benefit from the economic opportunities in growth areas.

The priorities and measures outlined in the NGAA’s 2021-22 Federal Budget submission include:

  • Infrastructure investment, including urgent action on outer suburbs traffic congestion. This means fixing major transport and freight routes that cannot cope with today’s traffic, as well as local congestion hotspots. Growth areas also lag behind in social and community infrastructure like recreation facilities and early childhood services.
  • Jobs and strong local economies – investing in local employment services, local community and employment hubs in growth areas and small business support through local government.
  • Health and allied services including hospitals, youth mental health and family violence prevention services. Many growth areas have limited health services, and existing services cannot meet demand.
  • Equitable allocation of emergency alleviation and response funding to support residents after recent bushfires and floods in growth areas and so high-risk areas are prepared for future emergencies.
  • Better planning policies and decisions for our cities, including reinvigorating the current City Deals, reviewing the emergency planning measures that were brought in during the COVID-19 crisis and researching the circumstances that led to so many growth areas becoming pandemic hotspots.

See all the NGAA recommendations for the 2021-22 Federal Budget.

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