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‘Young, vulnerable and jobless’ in budget crosshairs

Trevor Treharne
‘Young, vulnerable and jobless’ in budget crosshairs

The government is throwing $840 million at getting young people to “move off welfare and into employment” with an assertive new program in the 2016 budget.

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Government concern over the difficulties young people have entering the workforce has seen the multi-million dollar investment in a Youth Employment Package to help 120,000 young Aussies find work.

 

At the core of the package is the Youth Jobs PaTH (Prepare-Trial-Hire) Programme which aims to make young people more employable.

 

Also read: BUDGET 2016: Winners and losers

The programme is open to “vulnerable job seekers” 25 and under who are in employment services, and it operates in three stages.

 

Stage one is an intensive pre-employment skills training, which prepares the job seekers by providing employability skills.

 

Stage two is an internship placement that links young people with businesses. Up to 30,000 job seekers will get a four to 12 week placement in their chosen industry.

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For stage three, employers who hire an eligible young job seeker in an ongoing job will receive an accelerated wage subsidy of up to $10,000, paid over six months.    

 

“In 2012, 12 per cent of Australian children aged under 15 were growing up in jobless families,” treasurer Scott Morrison said in his budget speech.

 

“We must do better than this. We must try new approaches, not just keep doing the same old thing. And we must keep trying until we get it right.”

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Morrison said Australian businesses, especially small ones, told him that they want to give young people a go, but they want government support in terms of the risk and cost.

 

“It’s a two way street. Young people have told me how they need people to get alongside them to help them to develop the confidence, skills, attitudes and behaviours that are expected by employers.

 

“It is worth trying new ways to get young people into real jobs,” added Morrison.