Hamish Chamley was one of 16 national WorldSkills competition medallists from throughout Australia selected to take part in the BBM Youth Support Skilled Futures Awards scholarship. Picture: Brodie Weeding.
One of the big announcements for Tasmania from the budget was the funding for job seekers and apprentices.
Skills and vocational education minister Michaelia Cash said the government would create training hubs for regional areas.
“The delivering skills for today and tomorrow package will provide greater job opportunities for young people in regions with high youth unemployment through ten training hubs that create better linkages between schools and local industry ($50.6 million),” Ms Cash said.
Demographer at the University of Tasmania’s Institute for the Study of Social Change Lisa Denny said she was concerned the hubs could be duplicating services that already exist like TAFE and the University of Tasmania.
“We have had trade centres that haven’t worked in the past, I don’t know how are these any different,” Ms Denny said.
She said more should be done to look into why people were not completing courses and fix that problem rather than spending more money.
“The reasons why we have had employment decline has been a direct result of globalisation and the manufacturing industry decline on the Coast. Youth unemployment has be the result of a loss of jobs in the region.”
She said the program would need to be focused on where the demand was.
Liberal senator Richard Colbeck said locations for the training hubs would be determined in the coming weeks.
He said his strong belief was that North and North-West Tasmania would benefit from a training hub, particularly due to demand for skills generated by a growing economy.
“Our increased investment in training and skills is a good problem to have and is caused by strong economic management, we will need to support even more people to take advantage of these new job opportunities and reduced unemployment,” senator Colbeck said.
He said he expected small business investment would create greater demand for skilled labour.
“As part of delivering our strong economy the Liberal National government will be supporting training for 80,000 new apprentices, including in North-West Tasmania.
“The Liberal National government’s surplus Budget is an outstanding one for Tasmania and Australia and will help secure the future of our strong economy.”
Labor Braddon member Justine Keay said federal Labor had a better plan for Braddon.
“The budget fails to reverse cuts to TAFE and apprenticeships, in the past six years the Liberals have cut $3 billion from TAFE and skills and in Braddon we have lost almost 700 apprentices,” Ms Keay said.