The McGowan Government’s series of Regional Skills Summits reached Kununurra today, with local business and government leaders meeting to discuss opportunities to grow the skilled workforce in the Kimberley.
The first of two Regional Skills Summits to be held in the Kimberley, the
Kununurra-Kimberley Regional Skills Summit will generate further practical actions and new and innovative ideas to address the region’s unique skills needs.
A second Kimberley Regional Skills Summit is scheduled for Broome on
Monday, November 15 2021.
More than 25 government and regional business leaders from a range of sectors including the healthcare and social assistance, education and training, accommodation and food services, public administration and safety, construction 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.
Kimberley locals are snapping up affordable training opportunities offered through the State Government’s Lower fees, local skills initiative, with a 34 per cent increase in enrolments in the region this year.
Western Australian employers have responded by taking on more apprentices and trainees in the Kimberley in 2021, with commencements up by 51 per cent in the 12 months to
July 31 2021.
A range of initiatives is 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 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; has smoothed the pipeline of construction work; and is running a series of 10 Regional Skills Summits, including the one being held today.
As stated by Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery:
“Regional Western Australia is vital to our State’s economic prosperity and today’s
Skills Summit, along with another planned for Broome, will help provide a current picture of the Kimberley’s unique workforce and training needs.
“Our Government is keen to hear from business leaders about practical actions that can be taken in the Kimberley to help fill local jobs.”
As stated by Parliamentary Secretary to the Education and Training Minister Terry Healy:
“The regional Skills Summits have been incredibly valuable events and I look forward to seeing what ideas come from our visit to the Kimberley region.
“Discussions at the Summit will inform a local action plan to address the region’s changing workforce needs, with a focus on local solutions to local issues.”
As stated by Kimberley MLA Divina D’Anna:
“I am thrilled to see the first of two Skills Summits in the Kimberley being held today in Kununurra.
“This is an important opportunity for our business and community leaders to work together with government in forming a plan to build a sustainable, skilled workforce in the region.”