The Federal Government’s new jobactive programme to help unemployed people in Rockhampton (including long-term unemployed, young people and people over 50) is underway and is expected to achieve positive results.
Federal Member for Capricornia, Michelle Landry welcomed the Federal Assistant Minister for Employment, Luke Hartsuyker to Rockhampton today to officially mark the start of jobactive services in the region.
Ms Landry said jobactive was especially aimed at helping long-term unemployed people out of the ‘welfare cycle’ and gain skills that lead to meaningful employment through programmes like Work for the Dole, as well as offering wage subsidies to encourage businesses to hire people over 50.
“jobactive represents a significant reform of Australia’s employment services and a better way to deal with the issue of long-term unemployment in our region,” Ms Landry said.
“It replaces Labor’s failed Jobs Services Australia model which had become tied up in red tape and was letting down job seekers and employers alike.”
One of the success stories resulting from Work for the Dole can be found at the Rockhampton Heritage Village – tourist and community site housing museum displays and historic buildings. Ms Landry and Mr Hartsuyker visited the village to meet participants.
For the past few weeks, the Work for the Dole team has been painting and restoring an Edwardian Timber church (St Peter’s) at the site, donated by the Catholic Church.
“Jobseekers have been learning a range of valuable skills at this site including construction, landscaping, and facility maintenance,” Ms Landry said.
Ms Landry said that Work for the Dole was an important part of the Coalition Government’s new jobactive employment services.
“Work for the Dole provides job seekers with the chance to learn new skills and to be part of a team while they are looking for work. Being involved is something meaningful also provides them with a psychological boost and raises their self-confidence. At the same time the community benefits from their work on community projects,” she said.
“Work for the Dole also allows job seekers to demonstrate to a future employer that they are keen and willing to work, and can be a stepping stone back into a paid job.
“I encourage any local community group interested in helping a local job seeker to consider offering a Work for the Dole place. To get involved contact either my electorate office or the local Work for the Dole Coordinator,” Ms Landry said.
Today, Ms Landry and Mr Hartsuyker also visited CoAct, one of the new jobactive employment services in the Capricornia region, to meet local job seekers. Other organisations delivering jobactive services across the region include Busy at Work, MAX Employment, Neato Employment Services and Sarina Russo Job Access.
Mr Hartsuyker said that the new jobactive services had a number of features to help job seekers and employers, including new wage subsidies of between $6,500 and $10,000, including incentives for businesses to hire long-term unemployed people and people aged over 50.
Mr Hartsuyker said these subsidies can be paid flexibly to help business, especially small business, with the upfront costs of hiring and training new staff.