Joint Media Release with Minister for Small and Family Business, Skills and Vocational Education Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash
Territory employers will be incentivised to take on a new adult apprentice with the Coalition Government extending the Support for Adult Australian Apprentices payment (SAAA).
From 1 July 2019, eligibility for the (SAAA) payment will be extended to employers who take on an eligible apprentice aged 21 to 24 years studying a certificate III or IV qualification in areas of skills needs.
Until now, eligibility for the SAAA payment was limited to employers who engaged an eligible apprentice aged 25 and over when they commenced their Australian Apprenticeship. The SAAA payment could not be accessed for 21 to 24 year old age group despite them being paid an adult wage.
Eligible employers in the Northern Territory will now receive a one-off payment of $4,000 to take on an adult apprentice from 21 years of age.
Country Liberals Senator for the Northern Territory, Nigel Scullion said the Government was making it easier for Australians to start an apprenticeship.
“The experience and maturity adult apprentices bring to their apprenticeship – after years of studying or working elsewhere – is highly valued by employers,” Senator Scullion said.
Minister for Small and Family Business, Skills and Vocational Education, Senator Michaelia Cash, said extending the SAAA payment initiative for adult apprentices aged 21 – 24 year olds will support 12,500 apprentices over three years from 2019-20.
Senator Scullion said the SAAA payment would also incentivise Territory small businesses to take on an adult apprentice and expand their business.
The Fair Work Commission’s determination that an ‘adult apprentice’ for wage purposes was someone aged 21 years or older when they started their apprenticeship has created a disincentive for businesses to take on an apprentice aged between 21 and 24.
“Lowering the eligibility threshold for the SAAA to 21 years and over will encourage more employers to take on adult apprentices in areas of skills needs,” Minister Cash said.
Senator Scullion said “The CLP is delivering an apprenticeship system that works and is creating more jobs for Territorians.”