Fears for school, health jobs

SHOWING no sign of curbing its cost-cutting campaign, the Newman Government is drawing ire as it stamps its mark on the state.

Queensland Health and Education Queensland staff are the latest in the firing line after it was revealed temporary contract workers would face a freeze on job extensions.

To add fuel to the fire, Education Minister John-Paul Langbroek says the community would think it was "responsible" to cut costs.

Speaking to Leader of the Opposition Annastacia Palaszczuk, Treasurer Tim Nicholls has refused to guarantee the future employment of 20,000 teachers when asked about the Newman Government's jobs purge.

"Twenty thousand teachers now join the thousands of other government workers living in fear for their future," Ms Palaszczuk said. "Each day that passes we see the Newman razor gang slashing more and more jobs.

"The job cuts also directly contradict the Premier's written promise before the election of 'no forced redundancies' for government workers."

Julie-Anne Gilbert, North Queensland organiser of the Queensland Teachers Union, said departmental resources should not be stripped away.

"Schools could not be run without teachers, administrative staff, office staff, the district office or cleaners," she said.

"Those contract teachers are there for when other teachers are on maternity leave, sick leave or long service leave.

"If you take away contract teachers, other teachers will not be able to take their leave entitlements.

"Who will be left to teach the children?"

In a statement to the Daily Mercury, John-Paul Langbroek, Minister for Education, said because of the previous Labor Government, Queensland was heading towards an $85 billion debt.

"Temporary administrative contracts across all regions that were due to finish will finish as planned," the Minister said.

"Given Labor's legacy, I think hardworking Mackay and Whitsunday residents would think it is only responsible to look at options available to cutting costs across government."

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