ALP Candidate for Page, Janelle Saffin, was pleased to host a visit by Shadow Minister for Vocational Education, Sharon Bird, today.
The Shadow Minister was in Grafton today and will be in Lismore tomorrow to meet with members of the community to hear their concerns cuts to TAFE in the North Coast.
Staff are being cut from 16 local colleges along the North Coast.
More than 200 North Coast TAFE staff, including part-time and full-time administration and support workers, have been told their jobs have been "deleted" and they will be put off before Christmas 2015.
Sharon Bird said that with youth unemployment at 9.2 per cent for Coffs Harbour/Grafton and 15 per cent for Richmond/Tweed it was imperative that Governments invested in TAFEs rather than shutting them down.
“Back in June, Bill Shorten and I announced that a Shorten Labor Government would guarantee that a portion of funding for vocational education is dedicated to TAFE and formed part of Labor’s plan to make skills and training a national priority, by working cooperatively with states and territories.
“This announcement will ensure that our kids, people returning to work and workers in areas in transition will get the opportunities and the skills they need for the jobs of the future.
Janelle Saffin said that TAFE provides locals with the skills they need for the jobs of the future.
“In many regional areas, TAFE is the only vocational education provider that young people can access. TAFE also provides access to critical courses that no other provider delivers, especially for apprentices.
“In the country we need TAFE to skill up our young people for jobs and to help keep them here.
In addition to the TAFE funding guarantee, Labor will work with Premiers and Chief Ministers on a comprehensive National Priority Plan which properly defines and supports TAFE and places it at the centre of our vocational education and training sector.
Labor is backing TAFE and training because we believe every Australian – young or old, from the city or the bush – has an equal right to share in the jobs and opportunities of the future.
TUESDAY, 22 SEPTEMBER 2015