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Perth VTEC launch with Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Senator Nigel Scullion

Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion and GenerationOne National Development Director, Jeremy Donovan, today launched Perth’s first Vocational Training & Employment Centre (VTEC), which will provide guaranteed jobs for up to 200 Indigenous people.

“Employment is absolutely critical to ending the disparity between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians,” Minister Scullion said.

“VTECs are driven by a demand-led employment model that is the future of Australian Indigenous vocational training and employment.  It is focused firmly on training Indigenous people for specific jobs, ending the cycle of training for trainings sake.

“After building the VTEC model over a number of years, GenerationOne determined that the key to ensuring high long-term retention rates for Indigenous job seekers was to train people towards a specific job.

“The Australian Government has committed up to $45million for VTECs to train up to 5,000 Indigenous Australians for a specific job before July 2015.

“Increasing Indigenous employment is one of the three key priorities of the Australian Government and I congratulate GenerationOne on their enthusiastic involvement in this critical area.”

Mr Donovan, who works with GenerationOne building and promoting the VTEC model said he had seen family members churned through the old dinosaur system of ‘training for trainings sake’, only to come out the other end with a lot of qualifications but still no job.

“Our people become despondent after being used by a system that only provides training and rarely delivers a job. Training each job seeker for a specific job ensures that both the potential employer and employee are committed to long-term employment from the beginning,” Mr Donovan said.

“Both employer and employee have confidence that – from day one – the new staff member will be ready to contribute to the company, that the post-employment support systems are in place and that the company has received adequate cultural training.”

The Minister and Mr Donovan officially launched Perth’s first VTEC at employment partner Crown Perth’s entertainment complex, where the Minister signed off on the contract for the VTEC with Rob Gordon, CEO of training and employment services provider atWork Australia, part of the WorkFocus Group.

Mr Gordon said atWork Australia believes in the power of work to change lives.

"We already work with Indigenous job seekers and have had significant success when we match job seekers with employers’ needs,” Mr Gordon said.

“Extending this to the VTEC model, including training and mentoring services via our partners Polytechnic West and Indigenous Workabout, promises ever greater success for securing sustainable employment for indigenous job seekers... not just a job, but a role that they are trained for, supported in, and is expressly needed by Perth employers.”

Minister Scullion added that this first VTEC in Perth will focus on providing 200 well skilled employees to service the high levels of demand for jobs in the hospitality industry in Perth.

“We have spoken to employers across the country to determine where the jobs are located and what industries they are in,” the Minister said.

“This ensures each local employment market and not someone sitting in Canberra sets the agenda for training of local Indigenous job seekers.

“This is the third VTEC, with others already operating in western Sydney and outer Brisbane and at least another 10 to come.”