Back to All News

Disasters of rampant outsourcing of the public service laid bare

Media Release
Larissa Waters 19 Oct 2021

The Greens says today’s second interim report from the Select Committee on Job Security shows that the Morrison Government’s ideological mission to outsource the public sector has seriously undermined the Australian Public Service’s ability to deliver services and provide effective policy advice.

Greens deputy leader and public sector spokesperson Senator Larissa Waters said:

“Under the Morrison Government we’ve seen the public service gutted and billions handed out to massive multinational consultancy firms and labour hire companies.

“This rampant outsourcing has produced more expensive, lower quality and less transparent service delivery, while seriously damaging the public sector’s ability to provide effective and impartial policy advice to government.

“Unsurprisingly, the big consultancy firms profiting from this systematic undermining of the public service - EY, Deloitte, PwC and KPMG - are massive political donors, stuffing a combined $4.7 million into the pockets of the major parties over the past decade.

“Australia needs a strong, independent public service capable of meeting the education, housing, health, social security, environmental protection and infrastructure needs of the country. But this PM, true to form, is more interested in delivering corporate handouts than he is in delivering good policy outcomes.

“The Greens support the report’s recommendations to rebuild public service staffing levels, strengthen job security, reduce our reliance on contractors and consultants and improve public oversight of outsourced advice.”

Greens candidate for Canberra Tim Hollo said:

"The outsourcing of ever more essential government functions to private corporations has serious negative impacts on both the Canberra community and the state of our democracy.

"People go into the Public Service because they want to contribute to its vital work, but they're finding it devastatingly under-funded, with more and more of its work being contracted out to for-profit corporations like the Big 4 consultancy firms.

"Talking to people across the city, from junior public servants to senior ranks, I hear deep frustration that the federal government is constantly undermining their capacity to do their important work through under-funding, contract work, and outsourcing.

“I also speak to countless Canberrans who share our concern about the ties the major parties have to these consultancy firms. People rightly make the connection between the huge amounts of political donations the Labor and Liberal parties receive from these firms, and the loss of job security and capacity within Canberra's biggest employer.

"But what should worry everyone in this country is that what we're seeing through this process of corporatising the basic functions of democracy is a shift from governing for the public good to government by for-profit corporations."

Back to All News