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16 Indigenous graduates join WA marine transport industry

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SENATOR THE HON MARK ARBIB Minister for Indigenous Employment and Economic Development Minister for Sport Minister for Social Housing and Homelessness

SENATOR LOUISE PRATT Senator for Western Australia


October 7, 2011


A group of West Australian Indigenous job seekers has secured work in the marine transport industry, thanks to more than $320,000 in support from the Australian Government.

Minister for Indigenous Employment and Economic Development Mark Arbib and Senator for Western Australia Louise Pratt today congratulated the 16 Indigenous graduates on completing their training at the Port of Geraldton.

Senator Arbib said 12 of the 16 graduates would take up employment with Offshore Marine Services Alliance (OMSA), while the remaining four are expected to find jobs in the marine sector.

“OMSA is a company whose operations include marine support for Chevron’s giant Gorgon liquefied natural gas project on Barrow Island in the Pilbara,” Senator Arbib said.

“This has been a challenging training course for these graduates, some of whom have had to overcome sea sickness and a fear of heights to get through.”

Senator Pratt said the 10-week course, provided by Geraldton’s Durack Institute of Technology, included training on land and at sea in boat handling, deckhand duties, marine safety, dogging, rigging and working at heights and in confined spaces.

“Many of the graduates have had to move away from their families, friends and communities to take up this training and have now positioned themselves in a great place to gain long-term, sustainable employment in the maritime industry,” Senator Pratt said.

“The Australian Government, through the Indigenous Employment Program, committed $323,000 to support the program.”

Senator Arbib said it was critical that Indigenous Australians had the support and training they needed to take up jobs.

“Indigenous employment is not a short-term issue. Over the next four years the Australian Government has committed almost $650 million to the Indigenous

Employment Program and $50 million to the Indigenous Youth Careers Pathway Program,” Senator Arbib said.

“This is part of the Australian Government’s target to create more than 100,000 jobs for Indigenous Australians by 2018.”

Minister Arbib’s media contact: Sean Sammon 0417 137 419/02 9364 2600 Senator Pratt’s media contact: Alanna Clohesy 0438 288 479/08 9225 4411 DEEWR Media: Non-media enquiries: 1300 363 079