Member for Morwell Russell Northe yesterday in Parliament called on the Andrews Labor Government to extend the Back to Work Scheme for unemployed Latrobe Valley residents and retrenched Hazelwood workers to 30 June 2018.
Mr Northe said the Back to Work Scheme could to provide employers with up to $9,000 for hiring and training eligible employees in the Latrobe Valley.
“The Government has stated that the scheme will only remain open for the unemployed people living in the Latrobe Valley and retrenched workers from the Hazelwood Power Station until 30 June 2017,” Mr Northe said.
“It means Latrobe Valley employers only have one week to employ any retrenched Hazelwood workers or unemployed people in the Latrobe Valley to ensure they can make a claim.”
Mr Northe said this was not good enough and with the closure of Carter Holt Harvey looming it would mean more people in Latrobe Valley would join the unemployment queue.
“The time frame needs to be extended to allow additional time for Hazelwood workers who might not have been able to seek employment and also include Carter Holt Harvey employees who are about to lose their jobs,” Mr Northe said.
“It’s disgraceful that the Government will not support Latrobe Valley employers when employers for dairy industry workers and retrenched automotive workers have access to the scheme until mid-2018.
“The Valley is in the midst of a jobs crisis and the Andrews Labor Government must ensure our local employers can access this fund beyond the June 30, 2017 deadline.”
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