Senator the Hon. Bridget McKenzie
Deputy Leader of The Nationals
Minister for Regional Services
Minister for Sport
Minister for Local Government and Decentralisation
Senator for Victoria
Senator the Hon Nigel Scullion
Minister for Indigenous Affairs
Senator for the Northern Territory
10 December 2018
Up to 40 new jobs are on the way for various regional and remote centres over the next year thanks to the Liberal National decentralisation agenda
Senator Bridget McKenzie – Australia’s first-ever Minister for Decentralisation – said the new positions at the Aboriginal Hostels Limited (AHL) would boost Indigenous employment across Northern Australia.
“By moving these jobs out into regional Australia, we provide a very real economic stimulus to these cities and towns,” Minister McKenzie said.
“More employment means more families in the community, more children in schools and more customers for the local businesses.
“And let’s certainly not forget the fantastic lifestyle that these towns offer with virtually no traffic congestion, easy parking and their natural beauty.”
Up to 40 previously Canberra-based AHL positions are to be decentralised by December 2019 across the organisation’s regional network, including hostels located in Brisbane, Rockhampton, Mackay, Townsville, Cairns, Thursday Island, Mount Isa, Darwin, Katherine, Alice Springs, Perth, Kalgoorlie, South Hedland, Broome and Derby.
“The new positions are part of the significant reforms to the organisation under the stewardship of Dr Sue Gordon to make AHL a more customer-focused organisation that prioritises front-line operations across AHL’s hostel network,” Minister McKenzie said.
“The Australian Government’s decentralisation agenda has already relocated more than 1,150 jobs since 2013, ensuring the benefits of national economic growth are not restricted to major cities.
“Today’s announcement is another example of the Government backing our regions and follows our recent announcement of up to 69 new or relocated Australian Maritime Safety Authority jobs in Coffs Harbour, Airlie Beach and other regional locations across Australia.”
Minister for Indigenous Affairs Nigel Scullion said AHL provides short-term accommodation through a national network of 47 accommodation facilities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians who are travelling, relocating or must live away from home to access education, healthcare or jobs.
“We want to support our young people – including in Indigenous communities – to have local career options that give them a real option to stay in the regional areas where they grew up,” Minister Scullion said.
“The Australian Government is determined to deliver even more regional jobs through decentralisation.
“We know strong regions equal a strong Australia, with regional Australia producing around 70 per cent of the nation’s exports despite having only 30 per cent of the population. I am delighted my portfolio is now part of our commitment to backing the regions through the decentralisation agenda.”