KSB apprentices with Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann.
KSB apprentices with Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann.

On-the-job training vital for trades, says Labor MP

LABOR politicians have slammed a Federal Government idea, saying the move could cost current and future tradies the integrity of their qualifications.

Those looking to build a career in manufacturing could become fully-qualified without ever having to handle a tool, if the Federal Government plan goes ahead.

The suggestion came from government body the Australian Industry and Skills Committee, following a review of minimum requirements in apprentices.

AISC suggested mandatory workplace hours be removed from manufacturing apprenticeships, meaning on-the-job training would no longer be necessary and apprentices could complete their training remotely.

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The idea has been met with backlash, with Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann noting the importance of skilled workers.

“One in 10 people in the Ipswich region work in manufacturing,” Mr Neumann said.

“I want to make sure our apprentices are highly skilled, with great classroom training at TAFE and on-the-job training and mentoring on great worksites.”

KSB apprentices with Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann and Shadow Minister for Education and Training Tanya Plibersek.
KSB apprentices with Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann and Shadow Minister for Education and Training Tanya Plibersek.

Mr Neumann and Shadow Minister for Education and Training Tanya Plibersek visited KSB Australia’s Bundamba workshop and training facility, where the company tests, services and repairs its pumps and valves.

“KSB built this facility in Bundamba because they recognised the importance of the region in providing skilled workers,” Mr Neumann said.

“There are great employers locally who recognise the importance of investing in apprentices to ensure they have the skills they need now and into the future.”

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The Australian Manufacturing Workers Union launched a campaign denouncing the idea.

Tradies against the proposal have launched an online petition, calling on the Federal Government to commit to keeping on-the-job training.

“As an apprentice, I spend one day a week at TAFE and the other four days learning on the job,” the petition stated.

“I can’t imagine what an apprenticeship would be like without on the job training. Stripping away on the job training would be disastrous for our skilled tradespeople.”

Read more news by Ebony Graveur.



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