Release type: Media Release


Indigenous job seekers step into the hospitality industry

The Minister for Employment Participation, Brendan O’Connor, today announced a $190,000 Australian Government grant for an innovative project that will provide training and work experience for up to 20 Indigenous jobseekers in the Cairns hospitality industry.

"This project will give participants the right skills and training to help them secure a job in this sector," Mr O’Connor said.

The project, which is funded under the Structured Training and Employment Projects Employment and Related Services (STEP ERS) program, will involve IPA Personnel Cairns providing pre-employment training, job placements and mentoring support for participants.

Training offered as part of the project includes food and beverage operations and workplace hygiene courses. Participants will also be offered pre-employment support to help them identify their preferred career pathway.

"The project also includes a work experience component which will allow participants to put their training to use and gain a hands-on experience of working in hospitality," Mr O’Connor said.

"This will be coupled with mentoring to help participants identify and overcome any barriers to employment."

Mr O’Connor said the STEP ERS program was one of the Government’s Indigenous Employment Programs which aimed to provide Indigenous Australians with the skills needed to find and keep a job.

"While the level of unemployment in Cairns region has fallen by 33 per cent over the past five years, the unemployment rate for non-Indigenous people is four times higher than for non-Indigenous people," he said.

"The Government wants to help every job seeker gain the skills they need to secure sustainable employment."