The Community and Public Sector Union, representing workers in the Australian Public Service, says claims from Minister David Littleproud that the Coalition’s planned public service budget cuts would not lead to job losses are not credible.

By increasing the so-called “efficiency dividend”, the Coalition plan would rip $2.7bn funding from the public service.

Previous experience clearly shows that when the “efficiency dividend” is increased, jobs get cut.

  • In 2014-15, the Coalition increased the efficiency dividend by 0.25%, leading to 1,250 jobs cut.
  • In 2016-17, the 0.25% increase was extended by the Coalition, equating to $1.924b in funding cuts and around 4,000 jobs cut.
  • In 2019-20, the Coalition’s extension of the increased efficiency dividend pulled $1.5b from public service funding with more than 3,000 jobs cut.

Minister Littleproud’s lack of understanding of the impact of funding cuts can be summed up by his comment, "Governments don't employ people, businesses do".

This statement is frankly bizarre, and offensive to the 153,945 Australian workers employed in the federal public service and the people who use those services every day.

Quotes attributable to CPSU National Secretary, Melissa Donnelly:

“Minister Littleproud clearly does not understand how public sector funding and employment work.

“Public sector workers know that when budgets are cut, job cuts follow. Our experience over the term of this Government clearly demonstrates that.

“The public sector is not some magic pudding that the Coalition can continue to cut, without impacting jobs and services.

“Anyone who has been stuck on hold waiting for advice from Centrelink knows what public sector job cuts mean. Veterans whose claims for support are stuck in a backlog of more than 65,000 claims know what job cuts mean.

“Surely, a Minister who denies the existence of more than 150,000 Australian workers ought to sit this one out.”

Media Contact: Liz Bower 0408 405 121