Eight Indigenous Australians from Bundaberg and Central Queensland will have the opportunity to develop their skills in the building industry thanks to more than $100,000 from the Gillard Government’s Indigenous Employment Program.
Participants will live, work and learn at Gidarjil Development Corporation’s Thornhill Station near Bundaberg for 13 weeks while working on the construction of an industrial building on the property.
The Minister for Indigenous Employment and Economic Development, Julie Collins, and the Senator for Queensland, John Hogg, said the participants’ training will count towards a Certificate II in Construction.
“Our $100,000 investment, combined with more than $95,000 from the Queensland Government and $64,000 from the Indigenous Land Council, is opening up doors for these Indigenous jobseekers,” Ms Collins said.
“They will be given the opportunity to obtain an Occupational Health and Safety Certificate, as well as senior first aid certificates, human resource licences and traffic control tickets.
“They’ll also gain invaluable on-the-job experience along the way, learning the practical skills they will need to start their careers in the construction industry. Two of the participants have already secured jobs.
“This project is just one of hundreds the Gillard Government is investing in to halve the gap on Indigenous and non-Indigenous employment outcomes within a decade.”
Mr Hogg said the program would benefit the local community.
“It is critical local Indigenous jobseekers have the support and training they need to take up employment,” Mr Hogg said.
“We are giving them the chance to learn practical skills and put them to use.”
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