Wednesday, 10 June 2020
National Skills Commissioner Bill 2020; Consideration in Detail
by leave—I move amendments (1) to (3) as circulated in my name together:
(1) Clause 5, page 4 (line 11), after "investment in VET", insert ", issues specific to VET and workforce development in regional Australia".
(2) Clause 7, page 5 (line 4), omit "; and", substitute ";".
(3) Clause 7, page 5 (after line 4), at the end of paragraph 7(1)(a), add:
(iv) issues specific to VET and workforce development in regional Australia; and
The purpose of these amendments is simple: to insert one more bullet point in section 7(1)(a) to ensure the National Skills Commission does not leave regional Australians behind. The establishment of the National Skills Commission is a first step towards ensuring future initiatives and reforms in the VET sector are based on the best available data. We must be certain that this includes deliberately regional Australian data. The Joyce review, which called for the National Skills Commission to be established, specifically recommended that it have a particular focus on regional skill and workforce development. There are massive opportunities in regional Australia that could be unlocked if we had the right data to back robust VET and workforce development policies. The government has decided to omit regional Australia in this legislation. If we accept the bill as it is, we risk leaving regional Australia behind. These amendments will fix that blind spot.
We have to do more than talk about regional Australia in this House. We need to include regional Australia in our legislation. That's what this amendment will do. Colleagues, I ask you to support this important but small amendment.