• The Milingimbi community and work fair which was today attended by Senator Nigel Scullion, Minister for Indigenous Affairs. (AAP)Source: AAP
Welfare payments to people in remote areas are being penalised for not attending hygiene classes and 3D printing lessons, documents from the program have revealed.
23 Dec 2016 - 11:24 AM  UPDATED 23 Dec 2016 - 11:45 AM

Welfare payments to people in remote areas, many of whom are Aboriginal, are being docked for failures to complete 25 hours a week of training tasks under the government's Community Development Program. 

There are around 37,000 people in the CDP and more than 80 per cent are Indigenous according to the Federal Government CDP website. According to documents obtained by the Greens, CDP tasks include hygiene lessons, 3D printing classes and "Dirt Shirts".

Greens Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander spokeswoman Rachel Siewert called the tasks pointless.

"It's making up activities for people," Senator Siewert told the ABC.

"The feedback I've had is they feel that some of the activities are quite condescending and they're really just making it appear as if people are actually doing something rather than genuinely getting people into employment and genuinely preparing people for employment."

The tasks include Women's Hygiene and Nutrition: "This activity teaches women about personal grooming and hygiene to avoid becoming ill and spreading disease," states the CPS documents from the Prime Minister's department.

Another activity is described as Plastic Fantastic 3D printing training: "3D printed works have included: a solar panel, LED bike light, torch and mobile phone charger; glow in the dark totem bike spoke clips; jewellery; and fabric stamps to decorate clothes."

there is also an activity called Dirt Shirts for dying clothes: "This activity builds job seekers' understanding and experience in the: preparation of shirts for dying."

The ABC reported earlier this month that in the last financial year 20,000 recipients had been fined for not completing all the required tasks in a given payment period.