Luke Michael, Journalist
The social economy is the workforce of the future, according to a new report, which says outdated perceptions of the social services sector must change.
The Future Social Service Institute (FSSI) report identified the social economy as the fastest growing segment of the Australian labour market, with 250,000 new jobs projected by 2022.
“However despite this rapid growth, the social economy is largely overlooked in discourses about… Australia’s economic future,” the report said.
“Instead, attention is typically given to new jobs in advanced manufacturing, defence, science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), and construction.”
The report said it was time to change how the the social economy was “recognised, respected and rewarded”, with a need to make social services jobs more attractive to meet demand.
“In short, we must see the social economy as the workforce of the future,” the report said.
“We must stop talking about the sector as if it were only a welfare cost to the public purse, and we must start seeing it as being about industries, professions and careers.”