ParentsNext senate inquiry
(Image: Getty/damircudic)

Even without having to compete with the revelations regarding George Pell that are dominating Australian media, you suspect this would have been a quiet story. As Crikey arrives at the Senate inquiry into the ParentsNext pre-employment program for single parents, The Guardian's Luke Henriques-Gomes is already there, assiduously typing away. His Twitter feed (along with Per Capita's Abigail Lewis') operates as a mini Hansard for the event and he represents exactly 100% of the other reporters there -- although Crikey alumnus Sally Whyte is also listening in for The Canberra Times

Nominally a pre-employment program designed to engage single parents with their community, ParentsNext requires people to attend compulsory activities every week -- say, story time or playgroup. If they fail to do this (or just report it within a strict time-frame) their parenting payment is suspended.