Media Release by Senator the Hon Kay Patterson

Top Level Meetings In Paris And London

Joint Media Release with:

  • The Hon Kevin Andrews, Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations

The Minister for Family and Community Services, Senator Kay Patterson and Employment and Workplace Relations Minister, Kevin Andrews will attend a meeting of the OECD Social Policy Ministerial Meeting in Paris this week.The two-day meeting, which includes representatives from 30 member countries includes discussions on Australia’s social support system, workplace relations, workplace participation and welfare.

Senator Patterson said, “This significant meeting will provide Australia with the opportunity to promote the strengths of our social support system as well as gather fresh perspectives from the experiences of other countries.”

“The agenda will focus on how best to invest in families and children, how to reach a better policy balance between the generations, how active social policies can help address poverty and social exclusion and the roles and responsibilities of different parts of society in delivering social protection” Senator Patterson said.

Minister Andrews said he is keen to outline Australia’s general direction in workplace relations and workforce participation and the best ways of maintaining high employment while assisting more people back into the workforce.

“The principle object of the Australian Government’s policy reform must be to encourage and assist more and more people to contribute and participate positively in the economic and social life of our nation” Mr Andrews said.

In London, Mr Andrews will meet with key members of the Blair Government to discuss welfare reform as well as members of the UK Low Pay Commission on their system of setting minimum wages.