A COMPREHENSIVE workforce plan in Cairns is set to be delivered by the Queensland Government to ensure key industries in the region remain competitive.
The program will provide readily accessible and suitable training programs to attract new workers and upskill existing workers.
Other Queensland regional industries partnering with Jobs Queensland and receiving initial funding and support are the Far North Queensland water sector, the Bundaberg food and beverage manufacturing sector and the Wide Bay forestry sector.
The Grow Your Own program enables local key stakeholders and industry representatives in Cairns to identify workforce needs, plan what skills will be required, and map how the region and industry can meet the needs of the sector and support the region’s economic goals.
Jobs Queensland board member and Cairns project sponsor Tamilyn Brennan said Jobs Queensland is engaging with the local industry to gather information for the plan’s delivery.
“Jobs Queensland is engaging with local maritime/marine industry leaders to gather local intelligence that will identify local workforce challenges and opportunities and support them to ‘grow their own’ regional workforce to meet their current and future needs,” she said.
Member for Cairns Michael Healy said securing a strong maritime and marine workforce in Cairns is essential.
“The Port of Cairns currently services 15 per cent of Australia’s registered vessels,” he said.
“We know water is critical to many businesses and livelihoods across Far North Queensland so maintaining an operational water workforce is a priority.”
Minister for Employment and Small Business, Minister for Training and Skills Development Di Farmer said the government is helping regions to ‘grow their own’ strong workforce.
“The first four regional industries supported by the ‘Grow Your Own’ program are all essential to local economies and job creation – there are an estimated 4,600 jobs supported by the Cairns region’s maritime sector,” she said.
“With the support of Jobs Queensland, Cairns industries will be encouraged to think differently – to fill skills gaps and tailor their approach to attraction and retention to the communities in which they operate.
“‘Grow Your Own’ will ensure regional industries have the right people, with the right skills, in the right jobs, at the right time.”