The Hon Angus Taylor MP

Shadow Treasurer

Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash

Shadow Attorney-General

Shadow Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations

Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Senate


18 APRIL 2024


Today’s increase in the unemployment rate to 3.8% is another worrying sign for Australians struggling with the cost-of-living crisis under the Albanese Government.

The March 2024 labour force figures saw nearly 7,000 jobs lost across the economy. There are 57,000 more people unemployed now than a year ago, and youth unemployment is stubbornly higher than it was when Labor came to office.

There are now more people unemployed than there were at the last election.

Shadow Treasurer Angus Taylor said Australians are facing uncertain economic times, with no solutions from the Albanese Labor Government.

“Australians are paying the price for the Albanese Labor Government’s economic mismanagement.

“Household budgets being smashed by higher prices, higher mortgage repayments and higher taxes, and people are working harder for less.

“On top of that, there are now more unemployed people than at the last Federal Election, and a record number of people are working multiple jobs just to keep their heads above water.

Shadow Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations, Senator Michaelia Cash said she was particularly concerned that the labour force figures showed a significant increase in the number of Australians who are unemployed.

“The March 2024 figures show an increase of 21,000 unemployed Australians in a single month. We now have 57,000 more unemployed people in this country than a year ago.” Senator Cash said.

“Instead of trying to encourage the hiring of more Australians, the Albanese Government has created extreme uncertainty for businesses through its industrial relations changes,” Senator Cash said.

“Businesses are extremely confused about new laws surrounding the employment of casual workers, and about their ability to contact employees outside work hours after Labor’s ‘right to disconnect’ changes.” she said.

“I am also concerned that the Albanese Government is focused on an internal ideological debate about our employment services system rather that actually trying to get Australians into jobs.” Senator Cash said.

“It is worth noting the warning delivered by Gary Banks, the founding chair of the Productivity Commission, about the anti-productivity policies of the Albanese Government,’’ she said.

Mr Banks wrote today that: ‘provisions locking in past agreements and unions effectively having veto power over innovations, legislative provisions to restore industry-wide bargaining and to control non-permanent (read non-unionised) work arrangements – will diminish the scope for the win-win enterprise deals that are needed and see more production decision-making influenced by the regulator’.