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Posted on Oct 20, 2017 in Media

19/10/2017 [CDP] Key facts about the Community Development Scheme



The CDP is the main program of job related assistance for unemployed people in remote areas of Australia.  It is the equivalent of jobactive (formerly JSA) and Disability Employment Services in the rest of the country.

The CDP has around 35,000 participants, around 83% of whom are identified as Indigenous.

People with full time work capacity who are 18-49 years old must Work for the Dole, 25 hours per week, 5 days per week, at least 46 weeks per year (1150 hours per year).  Under jobactive Work for the Dole only starts after 12 months, and then for 390-650 hours per year.

Despite having a caseload less than a 20th the size of jobactive, more penalties are applied to CDP participants than to jobactive participants.

In the 21 months from the start of CDP on 1 July 2015 to the end of March 2017, 299,055 financial penalties were applied to CDP participants. Over the same period, 237,333 financial penalties were applied to jobactive participants.

The Australian Government must step out from behind closed doors and involve Indigenous people in a transparent process for reforming the discriminatory remote ‘work for the dole’ scheme, the Aboriginal Peak Organisations NT (APO NT)1 urged today.

Full version of this media release can be read here.


John Paterson (Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance NT), APO NT Spokesperson: 0418 904 727

David Ross (Central Land Council), APO NT Spokesperson: 0417 877 579

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