A report of a debt collection agency portraying itself as a Government department is just another underhanded and nasty tactic being used as part of the Government’s automated debt recovery program, Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert said today.
Review, due to be tabled this month, examines whether ‘sound processes’ were established to support fraud prevention.
A young doctor says a private debt collection agency chasing her Centrelink debt misleadingly claimed to be the Australian Government.
It's the latest allegation that debt collectors appointed by the Government are using aggressive tactics to get money from Australians targeted by robo-debts.
Local authorities were shocked to discover that a pile of ancient human remains found in a shelf of ice and recovered today belong to an early human believed to have died while on hold to Centrelink, a call that remains on hold to this very day.
Those investigating the incident have claimed that they were surprised by the discovery:
“We knew wait times were bad,” one insider told The Backburner. “But this fella has been frozen for hundreds of years. Frankly, even if he has his debts sorted out his phone bill is going to be an absolute mess.
Attorney-General George Brandis has engaged in a heated discussion about offshore detention centres on Q&A, but it was the senator's suggestion wrongly issued debt recovery notices could be resolved by contacting Centrelink that drew one of the biggest audience responses.
The program had heard from Lyndsey Jackson, the creator of a website for people who had wrongly received letters as part of the debt recovery scheme, who said hundreds of people were suffering anxiety as they were forced to disprove the claims.
“Senator Brandis: step out of your ivory tower, and attempt to call Centrelink. Be prepared for a wake-up call”, Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert said today.
As fed-up Australians demand answers from the seemingly unreachable Centrelink department, Attorney General George Brandis has bemused a television audience with his potential solution – “contact Centrelink”.
Attorney-general George Brandis has come up with a solution for people who’ve been asked to prove they don’t owe a welfare debt: Just call Centrelink!
The last six to eight months have been difficult for the government’s digital transformation agenda. From the botched Census 2016 project to the latest acrimony about the Centrelink overpayment recovery program — it’s been a series of speed bumps attracting plenty of criticism from the public and public servants.
Attorney-General George Brandis has blamed Deputy Opposition Leader Tanya Plibersek and the Labor Party for discrepancies related to the Centrelink debt saga, after being confronted by a tearful pensioner dependent on welfare to support her family.
The federal government announced changes to Centrelink’s controversial automated debt recovery system on February 14.
This article contains an extended discussion of the circumstances around a suicide.
As Centrelink continues its campaign of flawed and inscrutable debt collection, a young man commits suicide.
The man who led the first audit of Centrelink data-matching in 1999 says the government has known for decades that the process was prone to error without human oversight.
John Mayger, a retired auditor with the Department of Social Services, said his audit showed that detecting overpayments through data-matching was problematic without a high degree of staff vetting to provide an effective balance.
The Mercury understands that the meeting was held in the Hobart Town Hall and Ms Campbell is in the state for three hours.
Community Public Service Union Tasmania secretary Paul Blake said Ms Campbell has held similiar question and answer sessions around the country.
Mr Blake said staff questions are vetted beforehand.
The controversial robo-debt policy and protracted staff wage negotiations are the source of growing frustration among union members, he said.
Centrelink's phone lines are about to get better… no really, they're meant to, but you just have to wait a little longer for it to happen.
That's the line I'm getting from the Department of Human Services, which has copped a hammering in recent weeks over the government's controversial robo debt recovery scheme and its high error rates in clawing back overpaid welfare payments.
Labor has dismissed the Coalition's effort to soften its controversial Centrelink "robo-debt" policy, with an opposition frontbencher demanding a government apology for those targeted by the program.
Human Services Minister Alan Tudge announced on Tuesday evening that Centrelink, which has been sending private debt collectors to pursue debts raised under contentious data matching policy, will no longer demand payment for debts that are under review.
Centrelink's inability to adequately service its clients has reached crisis point. You can only squeeze so much from the lemon and funding and resourcing cuts should have stopped long ago.
The situation has been made worse thanks to the Turnbull Government's terrible debt recovery program. It's chewing up so many of Centrelink's limited resources and leaving people sick with worry over letters informing them that they owe large amounts of money.
Hundreds of thousands of Australians have been left feeling afraid and unsafe after Centrelink incorrectly sent them debt letters, community groups say.
The Australian Council of Social Services chief executive Cassandra Goldie says sending debt letters to people, in some cases incorrectly, does nothing to address worsening poverty in Australia.
The Government’s announcement of ‘improvements’ to the debt recovery system are fiddling around the edges and do not address the fundamental issues of the Centrelink automated debt recovery system, Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert said today.
The activist group GetUp claims Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's government is shaking down ordinary people, often for debts they neither owe nor can effectively challenge.
The group's national director, Paul Oosting, said it would be launching a billboard criticising the government for failing to go after corporate tax cheats while it attacked ordinary people over "false" debt claims.
The billboard would be placed on the lawns of Parliament House on Friday, he said.
The CPSU says the Turnbull Government has made minor improvements to its Centrelink robo-debt system, but has not addressed the fundamental flaws in the system.
Minister for Human Services, Alan Tudge, has announced for a second time that he will make changes to his error prone robo-debt system after thousands of honest Australians were targeted for inflated or non-existent debt, but he still will not apologise.
Government softens debt recovery system after backlash over recipients being required to pay back money even if they are disputing the debt
The government has formally tried to congratulate itself in the Parliament on its digital transformation of services in a sign of either “irony or grand self-delusion,” according to the shadow minister for the digital economy Ed Music.
The motion pointed to the government’s Centrelink technology, its health and aged care payment system and the MyGov online system.
The Senate has voted to conduct an enquiry into the Department of Human Services’ (DHS) automated debt recovery system.
Senator Rachel Siewert (Greens) said the inquiry would enable those who had been affected to have a voice.