A scheme which rewards employers who take on more trainees and apprentices will be expanded into all regional areas from today.
Works Minister Rob Johnson said Priority Access Policy (Training) represented a major boost for the rural youth job market.
Priority Access - an accreditation system which will see an individual company’s commitment to training taken into account in the awarding of large State Government contracts - replaces the Preferential Tendering Policy (Apprentices).
Mr Johnson said all WA companies tendering for Contract and Management Services building works worth more than $150,000 would need to be accredited by the Department of Training.
“This new scheme should encourage more training in all regional areas and therefore promote or provide more job opportunities for young people,” Mr Johnson said.
“Under the previous Preferential Tendering Policy, only companies in the metropolitan area and major regional centres were required to demonstrate a commitment to youth training and apprenticeships.
”Now, all companies who want to win Contract and Management Services building work will need to support recognised training programs.”
Mr Johnson said the scheme would operate for a six-month pilot period before being progressively implemented across all industries involved in Government contracting.
While the scheme was not compulsory, those who supported training and apprenticeship schemes would enjoy a significant advantage in the awarding of contracts.
Employment and Training Minister Mike Board said the State Government was committed to providing increased opportunities for young people to gain access to traineeships and apprenticeships.
“This new scheme gives employers an incentive to offer jobs to young people in regional areas where it can often be difficult for them to get work or gain skills that will help them establish a career,” he said.
Fran Hodge (08) 9481 3244,
Tamatha Smith (08) 9222 9211