We all remember the efforts industry went to during the resources boom to make it easier for employers to hire temporary overseas labour. Exaggerated claims about the number of skilled migrants that would be needed over the next 10 to 20 years were often featured in news stories.
Instead of insisting industry train and employ local workers, and directing resources into education and training, successive governments made it easier for employers to hire temporary overseas workers, and cut funding to TAFE and other training programs.
One of easiest ways to maximise the number of jobs that flow from the resources industry is to ensure projects are built and operated by local workers. Not only does this provide direct employment, but additional jobs are created when workers spend their wages locally. The employment of overseas workers sees wages head overseas, with the use of workers camps ensuring minimal benefits to local communities, and few additional local jobs.
A plan for WA jobs should include a commitment to ensure major resources projects are built and operated by local workers, and a commitment to provide the training necessary for local workers to perform these roles.
Sign our petition and download our plan for WA jobs here.