Media Release – Senator Pauline Hanson
AFTER years of arduous talks with the Coalition, the Morrison Government is today anticipated to announce a $60 million dollar, One Nation inspired Regional Australia Apprenticeship Program, which will see 1600 apprenticeship positions made available, just weeks before high school leavers finish grade 12.
One Nation Senator Pauline Hanson said, “I’ve worked hard for many years to see this pilot program come to fruition and it’s pleasing to see Australian school kids, in regional parts of this country, will be able to approach the local panel beater, hairdresser, electrician, or builder, just to name a few occupations, and ask them to take them on as an apprentice with very little cost to the business.”
“There are 65 different apprenticeship opportunities as a result of today’s announcement and parents should be encouraging their kids to consider a trade instead of a university course.”
The pilot apprenticeship program will see employers paid by the Federal Government 75% of the first year’s wage, followed by 50% in the second and 25% in the third year.
“Businesses I’ve spoken to recognise the need to train more tradesmen and women, but it’s tough in small business right now and training costs and wages have been a major barrier,” Senator Hanson said.
“I understand this because unlike the majority of politicians in parliament I have had the hands on experience of employing and dealing with apprentices while owning and operating a plumbing business with my husband.”
“One Nation has removed the burden of cost to businesses, but more importantly, created a pathway for training Aussie kids in the trades that Governments have given to foreign workers as a result of domestic skill shortages.”
“For years both major parties have neglected Australian apprenticeships in favour of importing labour from overseas through the use of 457 visas and so called free trade agreements, One Nation is determined to put the focus back on Australian apprenticeships and Australian jobs.
The pilot program will focus on the National Skills Needs List (NSNL) and will be centred on regional apprenticeship opportunities, to ensure small towns retain their youth and decrease youth unemployment.
“Regional Australia have some of the highest youth unemployment numbers, this is why the decision was made to have my apprenticeship pilot program target these areas and I’m hopeful this initiative will start to turn things around,” Senator Hanson said.
Senator Hanson hopes the program will also be made available to family businesses, where parents can employ their kids to help keep businesses alive in regional communities.
“Often parents like the thought of passing their business onto their kids one day, so it’s important that if their kids want to learn the trade, the program is made available to family members also,” Senator Hanson said.
The Regional Australia Apprenticeship Program is set to be announced by the Minister for Small and Family Business, Skills and Vocational Education later today (October 31) in Wagga Wagga.
Senator Hanson hopes that once the pilot proves successful, future Governments will expand the program to ensure apprenticeship numbers and skilled labour increase across Australia.