A WORRYING appearance of Shepparton’s wellbeing has been revealed in The Yearbook 2015: Progress in Australian Regions, recently released by the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development.
The document exposed our city as having had the lowest increase in household incomes, seeing a decrease in the numbers of youths earning and learning, seeing a decline in residents, had an increase in welfare dependency, having a low number of those with vocational or higher education, seeing a reduction in home ownership and there are more adults who are now smokers, although, on a brighter note Shepparton has had growth in the number of new businesses.
According to the yearbook, the Shepparton region had the lowest increase in median weekly household income in the country, rising by only $11, from $903 in 2001 to $914 in 2011.
Percentages of young people aged 15 to 24 years old who were earning or learning in all parts of regional Victoria fell by 0.7 percent with Shepparton falling by 1.6 percent.
Shepparton also declined by 1,475 people between 2006 and 2011.
The numbers of people who were welfare dependent increased throughout regional Victoria by an average of 269 per 1,000 from 2012 to 2013, with the highest increase in LaTrobe-Gippsland followed by Warrnambool and South West Murray region then Shepparton.
The North West Murray region and Shepparton had the lowest number of people with a vocational or higher education qualification, with 53.5 percent of the population in this category.
There was a drop by 1.2 percent in home ownership in the Shepparton area, and one of the more concerning statistics revealed showed that between 2004 and 2012 Shepparton reported the highest increase in adults who are now smokers; a rise by 8.9 percent.
New business entries showed Shepparton right on regional state average though, with a growth of 1.3 percent with manufacturing being our highest employing industry.
Shepparton’s main growth industry however was reported as health care and social assistance as it is for all of regional Victoria.