Trial Sites for Remote Engagement Program Announced

Minister for Indigenous Australians

The Morrison Government has today announced five trial sites where communities will help co-design the new Remote Engagement Program for jobseekers, as part of the ongoing commitment to support the social and financial aspirations of remote communities.

The new program will replace the Community Development Program in 2023 and will better support remote jobseekers to build skills and improve economic opportunities and employment pathways in remote communities.

Minister for Indigenous Australians, the Hon Ken Wyatt AM, MP, said five regions have been invited to begin co-designing with Government to trial new approaches to help inform the design of the new Remote Engagement Program.

“I am pleased to announce that the Remote Engagement Program trial regions will be Mid West/West Region and Ngaanyatjarra Lands region in Western Australia, Eyre in South Australia, Barkly (South East Barkly and North Barkly) in the Northern Territory, and Palm Island in Queensland,” Minister Wyatt said.

“These trial regions reflect the diversity of remote Australia and test a cross-section of jurisdictions, differing geographic proximity to regional centres, and varying proportions of job-ready CDP participants.

“Australians living in remote areas have many daily obstacles that a majority of people in cities may not think twice about. That is why I am dedicated to ensuring this new program is genuinely co-designed by and tailored for the communities it will operate in.

“A local co-design group will be established in each trial region, as well as a national working group.

“The whole purpose of the trials is to try different approaches. We want to see what works best and how regions determine their priorities so that a national program has the flexibility it needs to work in each region.

“This process is part of the Morrison Government’s commitment to designing programs in partnership with communities, service providers, employers, participants and all levels of government.

“I look forward to seeing the outcomes of these trials to design the best program that contributes to the target of closing the gap on employment outcomes between Indigenous and other Australians.”

The aim is for the trials to start later this year and continue until the Remote Engagement Program commences in 2023.

The Remote Engagement Program public discussion paper is currently open for submissions. The National Indigenous Australians Agency will be hosting a series of roundtable discussions and community information sessions, both virtually and in remote locations around Australia, to seek feedback on the design of the new program.

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