Constituency Question: Employment Services
Ms SPENCE (Yuroke) (11:41:52) — (13 331) My constituency question is to the Minister for Industry and Employment, and I ask: what support services and initiatives are being provided by the Andrews Labor government for former automotive workers and other unemployed residents who are seeking employment in the Yuroke electorate? I ask this question following reports that Taskforce Integrity, led by the Australian Federal Police and the Department of Health and Human Services, is targeting Craigieburn and surrounding suburbs after recent data showed a significant increase in the number of persons in this area accessing unemployment benefits.
Rather than recognising that this area has been greatly affected by manufacturing job losses, including the closure of the Broadmeadows Ford assembly plant, as well as rapid population growth, with Craigieburn and surrounds being the third fastest growing area in the country and being in the top 20 areas suffering mortgage stress in the country, the federal Liberal government has opted for a heavy-handed, demonising approach that presumes deliberate defrauding of the system. This is a disgrace, and I look forward to sharing with my community the positive support that this government is providing to the many seeking work in my community.
The Victorian Government is supporting those affected by the closure of car manufacturing in Victoria.
In particular we know communities in Melbourne’s north have been affected by the closure of Ford on 7 October 2016, pleasingly many local businesses continue to reinvent themselves and former auto workers continue to transition into new jobs.
To assist this transformation the Victorian Government have provided a range of support for companies to transform and grow jobs.
Through the Victorian Government’s Local Industry Fund for Transition (LIFT) program and the Automotive Supply Chain Transition Program (ASCTP), businesses affected by the closure of automotive manufacturing in Victoria are identifying new opportunities and creating jobs, thanks to ongoing support from the Victorian Government.
As of 30 October 2017, eight LIFT recipients had been funded. This is expected to generate an anticipated 192 jobs in Melbourne’s north (143 suitable for auto workers). In addition, $347,000 had been committed to eight recipients in Melbourne’s north under ASCTP, which helps supply chain businesses identify and capture new opportunities in other markets.
Support for automotive workers is being provided via specialist automotive Skills and Jobs Centres, one of which is located in Broadmeadows at the Kangan Institute. Skills and Jobs Centres are helping auto workers get ready for their next job, assistance includes resume writing, skills assessment, options for subsidised training, interview skills and job opportunities in local areas.
Another Victorian Government initiative is the Jobs Victoria Employment Network, a $68 million initiative that delivers practical support to job seekers facing barriers to employment who require assistance to fund and retain jobs. This includes workers retrenched from the automotive industry and specialist Jobs Victoria services have been funded to assist automotive workers to transition into new employment. These services are located in the areas of Melbourne most affected by the closure of the automotive industry. Funding has been granted to partners, such as choice Career Services and Brotherhood of St Lawrence, to facilitate sustained employment outcomes for 720 automotive workers.
Additionally, the Victorian Government partnered with the Commonwealth Government to deliver a jobs fair in Melbourne’s North on 3 August 2017 with 1,600 jobs available on the day, and over 2,000 job seekers attending.
The Victoria Government works with a range of stakeholders, including the automotive transition taskforces, relevant unions and other local support services such as Skills and Jobs Centres to ensure that the best outcomes are achieved for automotive workers.
The Hon Ben Carroll MP
Minister for Industry and Employment