Work for the dole or work for the devil?

Sep 21st, 2017

Jobseekers are performing work for the dole in dangerous conditions, with a lack of training and an inability to voice concerns in regards to work, health and safety issues. Many jobseekers who have voiced concerns about dangerous conditions in the workplace have been threatened with the loss of their job and subsequently, the loss of their Centrelink payments. This threat is enough to keep these workers quiet to suffer their injuries in silence, while, more jobseekers continue to sustain injuries that could have been prevented. The hazards present in these workplaces are also less likely to be recognised by these workers, as Rebecca Loudoun, a senior lecturer at the Department of Employment Relations and Human Resources at Griffith University uncovers in her research. There has been multiple cases of injured workers with ongoing injuries and illnesses that were not treated at the time and could have been prevented. David Beattie, an industrial lawyer, fights on behalf of some of these workers as their employers are reluctant to compensate them for their injuries sustained at work. Jobseekers are not classified as employees, consequently they are not entitled to workers’ compensation under the law. These injuries and illnesses will have an ongoing effect on these workers, some even rendering them unable to work in the future.

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