House debates

Wednesday, 9 December 2020

Questions without Notice

Indigenous Employment

3:17 pm

Photo of Ken WyattKen Wyatt (Hasluck, Liberal Party, Minister for Indigenous Australians) Share this | Hansard source

I thank the member for Lindsay for her ongoing interest and the work that she's doing within her electorate. We're continuing to build on our current strategies for increasing the employment of Indigenous Australians across the spectrums of industry. In the seat of Lindsay, on the 18th, the minister for employment and NIAA, through the Greater Sydney virtual jobs fair, spoke to young people about the impact of online use during COVID. The 174 attendees of the day had the opportunity to engage with employer groups and to listen to opportunities that they could aspire to within the Australian workforce, and there are 624 jobs on offer.

We then had the opening of the New South Wales Indigenous business and employment hub. In addition to that, I had a good meeting with the Chief Minister for the Northern Territory in which we talked about job opportunities for people in northern Australia, in the sense of gaining better skills and employment opportunities as well as wealth creation—because it is through that job cycle that we create the opportunities for young people, and older people, to move out of the reliance on welfare. In addition to that, I had a discussion with Jennifer Westacott about the possibility of training Indigenous young people to become board members on ASX companies, because that gives role models—that shows that there is a future, a future that will give them the chance to be part of Australian industry and to walk with some of the giants across all spectrums of the workforce that prevails and across industry.

In addition to that, Leila Smith, CEO of Aurora, spoke to me about the possibility of internships in this place. What she suggested was that it would be good for members of this chamber—and the other chamber—to take on Indigenous internship students who wanted to come in here and experience what it's like to work with a member of parliament, acquire skills and gain knowledge of how this place works. The internship student I had is now going to Columbia, in the United States, and will study on a scholarship. It has opened many doors for her in a way that was never there before. She lacked confidence. Through this program, we're now seeing her excel.

I will be looking at all of the opportunities to take our children into the top 15 payroll jobs that exist in this nation. That's where they will succeed. That's where they will be least expected to succeed.


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