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Tuesday, 22 June 2021
Page: 88


Mrs McINTOSH (Lindsay) (16:04): People in my electorate of Lindsay know that I always back our hardworking apprentices and those who want to become apprentices. Now is the time to recognise them—for their incredible contribution to our community and our economy—through the 2021 Australian Training Awards. Nominations are still open. Apprentices are really a driving force behind our economic recovery. That's why the Schools Industry Partnership in my electorate of Lindsay is doing really wonderful work to prepare local people to do their absolute best at job interviews to secure an apprenticeship. Ian, the director, told me that the Morrison government's stimulus to drive massive expansion of apprenticeships is exactly what our country needs. He said it's really fantastic to be supporting apprentices more than we've ever seen and that there's a true sense of excitement. Ian works closely with my Advancing Manufacturing Taskforce. Like me, he's incredibly passionate about creating local jobs for local people and making sure that people are ready to take up those jobs through apprenticeships.

The opportunity to recognise hardworking apprentices, trainees, businesses and job-training organisations is still open through the Australian Training Awards. This year's Australian Training Award categories are from the Outstanding Achievement in the VET and Skills Sector Award to the Small Employer of the Year Award, the Australian Apprenticeships Employer Award, the School Pathways to VET Award and the Excellence in Language, Literacy and Numeracy Practice Award.

There are over 2,000 apprentices in my electorate of Lindsay, who are working hard across a range of industries to develop the skills and experience they need. I want to quickly highlight in particular the manufacturing industry, because we have over 600 manufacturers in our community employing over 6,000 people. The minister for employment recently met with my Advancing Manufacturing Taskforce and urged them to take on even more apprentices and trainees. As we emerge from the pandemic making record investment into Western Sydney and developing the emerging job-creating industries, it has never been more important to bolster our skilled workforce. Boosting apprentices will play a key role in the future of our industries. That's why we have invested $4 billion to skill the next generation of Australians. This means supporting over 300,000 new apprentices and helping more than 300,000 people develop new skills through the JobTrainer Fund.

Apprentices and businesses in my electorate of Lindsay deserve to be recognised for their hard work, for the way they create and sustain more local jobs and for the way they do drive our economy. I encourage everyone who is interested to go to australiantrainingawards.gov.au and submit their nominations before the deadline—next Wednesday, 30 June. I wish everyone all the very best of luck with their nominations.