University staff call for ‘RoboBoss’ program to reclaim “wasted billions” in JobKeeper payments

The National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) has slammed the Morrison Government for the $12.4b that was wasted on companies which experienced no downturn in revenue during 2020.

The Union is calling for the return of that money and the reallocation to job-rich sectors which experienced mass job losses, like higher education.

“For a small portion of the JobKeeper money that was wasted on corporate handouts to profitable companies, we could have saved the 21,000 jobs lost from higher education,” said Dr. Alison Barnes, NTEU National President.

“We know of 1000 planned job cuts that are yet to be finalised; with a tiny fraction of this money these could be immediately saved.”

“That money should be returned to the taxpayer and reallocated to the industries suffering mass job-losses, like higher education, via JobKeeper 2.0.”

“If the companies refuse to pay it back, the Government should establish a RoboBoss™ program and send their debt collectors after the CEOs who have rorted the taxpayer.”

“Higher education lost $1.8b in revenue last year (see below). If we had received that money in JobKeeper instead of being locked out, we could have saved 21,000 jobs”.

“Millions in JobKeeper payments lined the pockets of people like Gerry Harvey, when instead it could have been invested in the R&D to produce vaccines, power renewable energy, and teach our kids.”

“The Government likes to boast about its economic prowess, but when it comes to our 4th largest export in education, it’s responsible for a job-loss catastrophe.”

“Not only did the Government fail to deliver JobKeeper to universities, it slashed $1b in funding per year via the so-called ‘Jobs Ready Graduate Package’.

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