Sixty-eight Indigenous Australians from North Queensland will have the opportunity to develop their skills and be placed into jobs in the mining or civil construction industries with the support of the Gillard Government’s Indigenous Employment Program.
The Myuma-Dugalunji Program 2011-12 commenced in September with participants from remote Gulf and Cape Communities and regional towns in North Queensland.
Minister for Indigenous Employment and Economic Development, Julie Collins and Senator for Queensland, Jan McLucas said it was part of a more than $1.25 million investment from the Gillard Government.
“Like previous participants in this program, these latest recruits will complete a 13-week residential program at Dugalunji Camp, east of Camooweal,” Ms Collins said.
“There they will receive pre-employment training, life skills training and experience operating and maintaining heavy equipment to help get them ready for work.
“Once they have completed the program, there are a range of experiences and employment opportunities on offer for the participants with local mining and construction companies.
“Myuma has strong links with many of the mining companies in the region to maximise the employment outcomes for the participants.
“I congratulate Myuma Pty Ltd and the Dugalunji Aboriginal Corporation on this innovative program.”
Job seekers will come from locations across Queensland, including Aurukun, Mt Isa, Dajarra, Cairns, Mt Garnett, Ravenshoe, Townsville, Ingham, Yarrabah, Charters Towers and Palm Island.
Senator McLucas said the Gillard Government’s Indigenous Employment Program would have flow-on benefits.
“It important that Indigenous Australians in our more remote areas, like the Cape and Gulf, have access training and employment opportunities,” Senator McLucas said.
“The mining and civil construction industries are demanding skilled workers and this project is equipping local Indigenous people with the skills, confidence and knowledge to be part of these growing fields.
“Creating pathways to real jobs is a fundamental part of closing the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.”
Ms Collins said Indigenous employment was an issue the Government is addressing in the long term.
“Over the next four years the Gillard Government has invested almost $650 million to the Indigenous Employment Program and $50 million to the Indigenous Youth Careers Pathway Program,” Ms Collins said.
“This is part of our target to create more than 100,000 jobs for Indigenous Australians by 2018.”
For more information about the Indigenous Employment Program, visit www.deewr.gov.au/iep