Townsville City Council’s expenditure with Indigenous businesses has exceeded $1 million so far this financial year.
The spend has seen more than 20 suppliers provide services to Council ranging from civil contracting, landscaping, training, and the provision of Protective Personal Equipment (PPE).
Acting Mayor Mark Molachino said supporting local Indigenous businesses means supporting jobs and training opportunities for locals.
“Indigenous-owned businesses have significantly higher rates of Indigenous employment when compared to other businesses, which leads to increased employment and training opportunities,” Cr Molachino said.
“The purpose of creating a pre-qualified panel of Indigenous suppliers was to provide tender opportunities to these businesses and make it easier for them to work with Council.
“I’m glad to see Council injecting money directly into our local economy by utilising homegrown Indigenous businesses and supporting jobs for the community. I look forward to it continuing throughout the rest of this financial year and into the future.”
The Vegetation Guys operations manager Daniel Fairweather said working with Council has allowed him to hire more First Nations youths and mentors to support them.
“Thanks to the work we do with Council, our team has grown, and we have been able to provide work for First Nations people, disengaged youth, school leavers and veterans,” Mr Fairweather said.
“We have also been able to provide training and further employment opportunities to the community as our way of helping people find their purpose and passion in life.
“Small business failure rates can be high in regional areas, and this is higher again for Indigenous businesses. Local companies give back more to the community than just the economy as we are part of the fabric of the city.
“Council has done really well with this initiative, and we’re very supportive of them expanding their expenditure with Indigenous businesses even further to become a leader in this space.”