News | 9 February 2016

The Victorian Goldfields Railway has been restoring the stream trains with the help of 10 local job seekers under the Australian Government’s Work for the Dole programme. 

The job seekers are learning a variety of skills, sanding, painting, replacing windows, removing moss and mould as they restore the train carriages to their former glory. Two of the job seekers have worked with railway mechanics to upgrade the boilers for the steam engines and get them working again.

News | 2 February 2016

The Work for the Dole activity referred to as ‘Empowering the Community’ ran from January to June 2015 with assistance and donations from a variety of local businesses and organisations including Bacchus Marsh Lions club, Bunnings and the Metropolitan Remand Centre.

Heather Chambers, who is the Work for the Dole supervisor, and a qualified horticulturalist and trainer, was responsible for getting Melton Specialist School programme off the ground. She describes the results of the activity. ‘The school grounds are beautiful, with colourful murals that brighten the assembly area, flourishing vegetable beds with bench seating, plants, paths and bike sheds’ Heather goes on to say ‘the feedback from the community has been nothing but positive. It’s incredible what the community and the participants get out of it.’

News | 29 January 2016

Minister for Employment Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash and local Member for Eden-Monaro the Hon Dr Peter Hendy MP visited Resort Trailers in Queanbeyan to announce the first of the organisations to deliver the new Transition to Work service.

“This important initiative will ensure young job seekers aged 15-21 receive intensive support from community-based organisations with expertise in helping young people to develop their work-like skills,” Minister Cash said.

Transition to Work is part of the Australian Government’s $331 million Youth Employment Strategy, announced in the 2015-16 Budget.

The service will commence from February 2016 in the first seven employment regions:

News | 20 January 2016

This assistance will help affected workers who have a letter of redundancy by providing intensive career transitioning services through the Government’s jobactive employment programme, helping them get back in the workforce as quickly as possible.

The workers will also have access to the “What’s Next” website, which provides a range of information and self-help resources to help retrenched workers get on a pathway to new employment promptly.

To read the Minister’s media release visit the Minister's media centre.

A fact sheet about the assistance available to workers is also available.

News | 15 January 2016

On 1 January 2016 the $13.5 million Engaging Early School Leavers measure announced in the 2015-16 Budget commenced.

From 1 January 2016 early school leavers will be expected to look for work if they are not undertaking:

  • full-time education; or
  • a combination of education and paid work for at least 25 hours a week (or 15 hours for principal carer parents and people with a partial work capacity).

Early school leavers will now also have to attain Year 12 or a Certificate III (up from Certificate II), in order to no longer be subject to the 25 hours per week participation requirement.

News | 4 January 2016

Under the direction of the host organisation, Maddingley Park Committee of Management, and with the support of the local community, the Lions and Rotary clubs and sporting groups, the participants have been painting the clubhouse and kiosk, gravelling pathways, removing rubbish, planting and maintaining the gardens.

The Maddingley Park clubhouse gets a facelift

The Maddingley Park clubhouse gets a facelift

Heather Chambers, Work for the Dole supervisor at Maddingley Park, said ‘The participants are learning lots of new skills, they are learning to work as a team, to use their initiative and most importantly they are learning to network.’

News | 30 December 2015

The Government released the final report by the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption on 30 December 2015.

The Royal Commission was established by the Government on 31 March 2014 to inquire into the payment of any bribes, secret commissions or any other unlawful payments relating to trade unions.

The work of the Royal Commission has now culminated in the final report, in which the Commission makes a number of significant recommendations and findings.

The Minister’s media release announcing the Government’s initial response to the final report

The Royal Commission’s final report

News | 23 December 2015

The Government tabled the final report of the Productivity Commission in the Parliament of Australia on 21 December 2015. Completion of the inquiry and release of the report delivers on one of the Government’s commitments made ahead of the 2013 federal election.

In early 2016 the Government will host a series of roundtable discussions with employees, employers, unions and employer groups to consult on the report.

A copy of the report is available on the Productivity Commission website.

A copy of the Minister for Employment’s media release is available.

News | 22 December 2015

The Australian Government will soon be seeking proposals from organisations to deliver new projects designed to assist parents of young children plan and prepare for employment.

More information on Supporting Parents to Plan and Prepare for Employment is available.

News | 21 December 2015

The Government has decided to implement a number of structural adjustment packages to assist retrenched workers to transition into new employment.

The package is worth $2.2 million and will be available to support retrenched workers get back in the workforce as quickly as possible. Workers will have access to intensive employment assistance through jobactive, the Government’s national employment service and in the case of the Illawarra access to a local Employment Facilitator to help job seekers re-connect with employment and training opportunities. They will also have access to the “What’s Next” website, which has a range of information and self-help resources.

To read the Minister’s media release visit the Minister's media centre.

News | 9 December 2015

The Indicator provides advance warnings of whether employment is likely to grow faster or slower than its long-term trend rate of growth and is produced by the Australian Government Department of Employment.

The Indicator has risen for the fourth consecutive month in June 2015, implying a weakly confirmed trough occurred in February 2015. The growth rate of employment is likely to fluctuate around its long-term trend growth rate and may eventually rise above it.

The December 2015 report is now available.

News | 8 December 2015

Trends in Federal Enterprise Bargaining is a quarterly report containing data about the number of enterprise agreements made in the federal workplace relations system, as well as data about the number of employees covered and the level of wage increases included in collective agreements.

To view the September quarter 2015 report, visit the Trends in Federal Enterprise Bargaining page.

News | 8 December 2015

A community project in Mount Gambier, South Australia, is transforming an historic property into a future respite holiday home for people with disabilities and their families, while also providing work experience for ten local Work for the Dole participants.

The restoration work is undertaken by a group of enthusiastic jobseekers, who are assisted by local volunteers and a trained supervisor. The participants are learning a range of new skills and contributing to their community along the way.

The run-down, 100 year old house was owned but unused by Bedford Phoenix, a not-for-profit community organisation which provides employment opportunities for people with disabilities.  Bedford approached local jobactive providers Job Prospects to establish the maintenance and restoration project as a Work for the Dole activity.

News | 4 December 2015

The Caterpillar Structural Adjustment Programme will be delivered as part of jobactive, the Australian Government’s way to get more Australians into work. This assistance will be specifically targeted at helping Caterpillar workers and associated suppliers affected by the job losses connect with a wide range of services.

A Fact Sheet about the assistance available to workers is also available. 

News | 16 November 2015

On Monday 16 November, the Department of Employment released an independent evaluation of the Work for the Dole pilot which ran from 1 July 2014.  The evaluation has found the programme was effective in helping participants gain confidence and self-esteem and learn skills such as team work, communication and appropriate workplace behaviour.

The independent evaluation by the Social Research Centre and the Australian National University found that of the participants surveyed: 

News | 13 November 2015

The department is seeking applications for grant funding from not-for-profit, non-government community organisations to deliver innovative and unique services that help vulnerable young people who are long-term unemployed, or at risk of becoming long-term unemployed.

Empowering YOUth Initiatives will see a range of initiatives that offer new and creative ways to connect with young people, their families, communities and employers to help them on a path to secure employment.

The initiative was announced under the Support for Vulnerable Job Seekers measure as part of the Youth Employment Strategy in the 2015–16 Budget.

Minister for Employment, Senator the Hon. Michaelia Cash announced the release of the grant application process in a media release this morning.

News | 2 November 2015

Located 45 kilometres west of Melbourne, Mt Rothwell is a sanctuary for some of Victoria’s most endangered mammal species including the Eastern Barred Bandicoot, Brush tailed Rock Wallaby and wild Eastern Quoll. A team of Work for the Dole participants have constructed a number of fences to exclude rabbits from highly overgrazed vegetation. This vegetation provides essential habitat for the threatened animals. 

Jacqui Young, conservation officer, has been a driving force in establishing the Work for the Dole programme at Mt Rothwell. Jacqui says the participants have been instrumental in helping Mt Rothwell restore and protect vital habitat to ensure threatened species are protected from...

News | 6 October 2015

A new National Work Experience Programme is now available to help job seekers gain experience and confidence while demonstrating skills to potential employers.

The work experience programme will give employers the opportunity to see if a job seeker is a good fit for their organisation and offers employers the opportunity for a wage subsidy where they offer a job seeker paid employment.

Senator Cash media release

Information about the programme can be found on the National Work Experience Programme Page on the Employment website.

News | 21 September 2015

Submissions by interested parties can be made by email or by post, with a due date of 14 October 2015.  Additional information is available on the Review of Fair Work Amendment Act 2013 webpage.

News | 8 September 2015

Details of the organisations delivering jobactive are available:

To find out where the sites are for each jobactive provider, see the list of jobactive sites by employment region.

You can also search for organisations delivering jobactive through the provider search on the jobactive website.

Fact sheets with more information on jobactive - including the purchasing arrangements - are available at the jobactive page.

News | 4 September 2015

Workers faced with retrenchment now have access to a set of online resources to help them get back on their feet and into work as quickly as possible.

Minister for Employment Senator Eric Abetz launched the “What’s Next” website today and said it was important to support retrenched workers making the transition to new employment.

“Each year many Australians face the difficult situation of being retrenched from their job,” Senator Abetz said.

“The “What’s Next” website offers assistance and pulls together a range of information and self-help resources to identify a person’s skills and strengths to get them on a pathway to new employment as quickly as possible.”

“What’s Next” includes a link to Changing Lanes – which is a website developed specifically for automotive workers facing retrenchment. The site provides information about the range of support available to help them to transition to a new sector.

News | 30 July 2015

On 30 July 2015, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women and Elizabeth Broderick, Sex Discrimination Commissioner, Australian Human Rights Commission, launched the Supporting Working Parents website and online resources.

News | 30 July 2015

The data are obtained from the Department of Employment's Workplace Agreements Database.

You can view the report on the Trends in Federal Enterprise Bargaining page.