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Centrelink scandal: Labor and Greens likely to force inquiry into debt recovery system

7 February 2017
The Guardian

Labor and the Greens have proposed a wide-ranging Senate inquiry into the Centrelink debt scandal, which would examine how the system went “so dismally wrong at the expense of struggling Australians”.
The Labor senator Doug Cameron and the Greens senator Rachel Siewert gave notice of their proposed inquiry to the Senate on Tuesday afternoon and it is likely to pass a vote on Wednesday, with One Nation and the Nick Xenophon Team previously expressing support.

Greens and Labor to move for Senate inquiry on Centrelink automated debt systems

7 February 2017

Labor and the Greens are set to force a Senate inquiry into Centrelink's controversial automated debt recovery system, an issue that had dogged the federal government for more than two months.
The Senate will vote on a motion to establish a wide-ranging probe on Wednesday as the government continues to defend data-matching of records held by government agencies to recover millions in overpayments to welfare recipients.

A statement on Ombudsman’s decision to investigate Centrelink

9 January 2017
Andrew Wilkie MP, Independent Member for Denison

Many members of the community will gain some comfort from the news that the Commonwealth Ombudsman will indeed investigate Centrelink’s controversial debt recovery system. I, and I understand my colleague Senator Nick Xenophon, had been pressing the Ombudsman for such an inquiry so this is a victory for common sense and appropriate oversight of government policy.

Inaccuracy of Centrelink debt notices not acceptable: Xenophon

6 January 2017
RN Breakfast

Earlier, this week the Social Services Minister Christian Porter told me that Centrelink's automated compliance system was 'working incredibly well'.
But the stories of the distress caused by what many see as debt recovery notices keep coming in.
South Australia Senator Nick Xenophon says he's been inundated with complaints about Centrelink debt letters and referred the matter to the ombudsman late last month.


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