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ACOSS is calling for people to contact their senators about a reconsideration of the expanded automation suspensions of job seeker payments.

The proposed changes could expand automated suspensions of JobSeeker payments for people who are late sending in their job searches and force unemployed people to negotiate compliance requirements with a computer, delaying their first payment.

The bill could reinforce the automated suspension of JobSeeker payments for people who have trouble meeting their online requirements, leaving people with a dead phone battery away from missing their next payment – and in some cases becoming homeless. Many people face huge challenges in online systems, such as being unable to afford or access internet or to navigate new technology.

The bill would also force people to negotiate a online ‘Jobs Plan’ with a computer before they have access to social security payments, delaying the first payment for an average of 144,000 job-seekers each year, leaving them almost $500 worse off.

Concerningly, the bill weakens workplace protections, like health and safety standards, for people participating in employment programs like Work for the Dole. On top of this, it also weakens protections for single parents and people with disability against excessive work and requirements.

Can you call your Senators now and ask them to block the Bill?

Senators will vote on the bill tomorrow morning, which gives us just 24 hours to block it. If we can flood Senators’ offices with calls today, we can shore up enough Senate opposition to block the ‘Robo-Employment Services’ bill and prevent the devastating damage it could cause millions of people already struggling just to get by.