That this General Synod expresses great concern that in this resource-rich country there are still unacceptably high levels of unemployment especially among young people. It believes that prolonged unemployment leads to boredom, loneliness, isolation from the mainstream of society and ultimately perhaps to violence.
It therefore calls on the Federal Government immediately to:
(i) introduce locally organised Federal-funded work experience and job creation programmes for unemployed
(ii) immediately raise the adult base rate of unemployment benefit from $53.45 to $66.65 per week;
(iii) raise the under-eighteen unemployment benefit rate from $36.00 to $44.10 per week with an additional
$20.00 accommodation allowance for persons of all ages having to support themselves independently.
(iv) Restore and reconstitute a form of Community Youth Support Scheme which was terminated in the 1981/2
It also calls on the community as a whole, and governments, employers and trade unionists in particular; to accept that unemployment will not disappear unless there is a genuine attempt to address the underlying causes of unemployment which include:
(i) the increasing percentage of the population entering the paid workforce;
(ii) the increase in part-time employment at the expense of full-time work;
(iii) the lack in some school-leavers of certain skills to a degree sufficient to ensure them paid employment; and
(iv) the undirected impact of technological change.
It calls on all General Synod representatives to promote these and allied matters at parish and diocesan levels.
(Canon P.J. Hollingworth, 26.8.81)