- Regional Skills Summit being held in Geraldton today
- More than 30 business leaders, peak bodies, unions, government agencies and training representatives attending
- State Government supporting unique workforce development needs of regional WA
- Student course enrolments up by 23 per cent in WA's Mid-West
The McGowan Government is hosting a Regional Skills Summit in Geraldton today - the third of 10 skills summits to be held in Western Australian regional centres this year.
The Geraldton-Mid West Regional Skills Summit will generate further practical actions and new and innovative ideas that will form the basis of a local action plan to meet the region's unique workforce needs.
More than 30 government and regional business leaders from a range of sectors including the agriculture, construction, education and training, healthcare, hospitality and tourism, mining and retail industries are attending.
Recognising the importance of access to training to build a skilled workforce and retain people in regional areas, the McGowan Government has been working to ensure its investment in training initiatives reaches all corners of the State.
Student course enrolments in the Mid-West have increased by 23 per cent in the past year, driven by affordable training opportunities through the Lower fees, local skills program and strong growth in employment based training.
Mid-West employers have responded by taking on more apprentices and trainees in 2021, with commencements up by more than 86 per cent in the year to July 31, 2021.
A range of initiatives are already progressing from the Perth Skills Summit to attract and retain skilled workers and continue our State's strong economic growth.
These initiatives include attracting onshore skilled migrants to fill jobs in demand in WA; supporting mature age apprentices; promoting the tourism and hospitality industry to school students to grow the workforce; extending the Apprenticeship and Traineeship Re-engagement Incentive; freezing regional Government rental accommodation to attract public sector workers to the regions; boosting Aboriginal youth employment opportunities; and providing support for jobseekers experiencing disadvantage to obtain a driver's licence.
The State Government is also progressing targeted advertising campaigns to attract interstate workers and increase participation of under-represented groups in WA.
Comments attributed to Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery:
"Building a sustainable Mid-West workforce that can support the region's economic activity requires industry and government to work together.
"Today's summit is an opportunity for the region's business leaders and government to identify and progress ideas to meet the immediate and long-term skills needs of the Mid-West region."
Comments attributed to Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Education and Training Terry Healy:
"This is the third regional Skills Summit I have hosted, and the opportunity to hear from local industry has been invaluable.
"Insights from the summit will inform a local action plan to address changing workforce needs in the Mid-West, with a focus on local solutions to local issues."
Comments attributed to Geraldton MLA Lara Dalton:
"I was thrilled to recently join the Premier in marking the start of construction for the upgrade at Geraldton TAFE. We have also seen a huge increase in TAFE enrolments in the Mid-West.
"There has been a big investment by the McGowan Government into training in the Mid-West, and this summit will help develop further ideas to assist the skills needs of the local workforce."
Minister's office - 6552 5700