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Money Centrelink call centre shake-up to cost taxpayers $50m

04:58  13 october  2017
04:58  13 october  2017 Source:   msn.com

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828fx.net.

A Federal Government trial restricting how Centrelink recipients can spend their money is costing taxpayers up to about ,000 per participant.

The government is spending $50 million on a program they claim will slash Centrelink call waiting times, but critics say it's ineffective, "cut-price privatisation".

Private company Serco, which runs Australia's detention centres, will take on outsourced call centre duties from Centrelink, Human Services Minister Alan Tudge has announced.

"This will cost $50 million over two years," he said.

"We are piloting a new program...using a private provider to answer some of these calls."

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  ATO reveals six “far-fetched” excuses people have given for not lodging tax returns on time One Australian taxpayer has told the tax office they couldn’t lodge their return because they have a condition that only allows them to work for 30 minutes a week.&nbsp;Another had the misfortune of their accountant going to prison, which therefore prevented them from getting their paperwork in on time. “He’s working on it, but it’s taking longer than normal because he can’t access a computer,” the taxpayer said.

Cost to call centrelink . I'm on a Disability Support Pension, and am waiting in the queue for housing, and have been for five years. However, the NBN rollout has meant the end to that, with peoplke unable to get service for up to 6 months.

Centrelink call centre shake - up to cost taxpayers $ 50 mhttp We’re here to help. Our dedicated call centre answered 20,900 #Monarch related calls yesterdaypic.twitter.com/H7ooody0rN.

Serco already undertakes similar work for the tax office.

In 2014, 22 million calls to Centrelink were met with engaged signals.

This increased to 29 million in 2015, and a whopping 42 million in 2016.

Nadine Flood from the Public Sector Union said the union had been calling for more staff in Centrelink to help families, pensioners and other vulnerable Australians.

"Services are complex and it requires properly trained staff," she said.

"This is a cut-price privatisation and it's not going to fix people's problems with Centrelink."

She said the government was putting peoples' personal details at risk.

"We have had a huge reaction from Centrelink staff over the last 24 hours," she said.

"These are mostly working mums worried about jobs and wages, they are worried about more of Centrelink being sold off and they are worried about clients."

Mr Tudge said the new operators would be "up and running" by early next year.

The first NBN fibre to the curb has been switched on .
The tech that could revolutionise the roll-out of the National Broadband Network is one step closer to reality. The first installation of a FttDP -- or fibre to the curb -- connection has been completed in an NBN trial in Victoria, and the results are impressive. Coburg in northern Melbourne is the home of the first NBN fibre to the curb trials, and the early particular installation that NBN has called on for its latest announcement has managed to hit an impressive 109Mbps download and 44Mbps upload speeds.

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