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Hull applauds new measures to assist apprentices.



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Media release 14 July 2005

HULL APPLAUDS NEW MEASURES TO ASSIST APPRENTICES The Nationals Member for Riverina Kay Hull says the latest measures to assist New Apprentices will go a long way towards addressing the skills shortages in the trades and services industries.

Mrs Hull said a number of new training measures came into effect on 1 July 2005 to reward and encourage both New Apprentices and their employers.

“One of these measures is the introduction of the new Commonwealth Trade Learning Scholarships valued at $106.3 million over four years,” Mrs Hull said.

“These scholarships will help to ease the burden faced by New Apprentices in their first years of training in a trade experiencing skills needs.

“Under the program, from the 1 July 2005 eligible New Apprentices may now receive a $1000 tax exempt scholarship, paid in two $500 instalments at the end of each of the first and second years of the New Apprenticeship. This scholarship will be provided to those employed in a small or medium sized business.”

Other key initiatives that will assist local apprentices and trainees include: • Supplying tool kits valued at up to $800 to around 34,000 New Apprentices each year who enter a New Apprenticeship in a skills needs trade; • Extending the Living Away From Home allowance paid to New Apprentices to the third year of

their New Apprenticeship; • Providing a further 4500 pre-vocational training places in trades through Group Training Organisations; • Funding an additional 7000 schools based New Apprentices through Group Training

Organisations; • Encouraging young people to enter and remain in New Apprenticeships, by extending eligibility for New Apprentices to apply for Youth Allowance, Austudy or ABSTUDY payments.

“I am thrilled to see the introduction of these new incentives aimed at encouraging more people to undertake training and pursue an apprenticeship or traineeship as a rewarding and worthwhile career. This Government is committed to encouraging young people to take up a career in trades and services while ensuring it is recognised as a valuable and worthwhile career path.”

Further information about the initiatives is available at www.newapprenticeships.gov.au, and more information on Centrelink payment rates contact 13 36 33 or visit www.centrelink.gov.au (End)

For further information please contact Katie Brunskill on 02 6921 4600 or 0428-214 600.