Sodexo Australia has signed an agreement with the Australian Government to help grow its Indigenous employment rate from 8 per cent to 20 per cent by the end of 2019-20.
Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion, who launched Sodexo Australia’s Employment Parity Initiative (EPI) Agreement in Perth today, said the Government was working with Australia’s largest employers to ensure their workforces reflected the size of Australia’s Indigenous population.
“If we can reach employment parity – 3 per cent of the workforce – with these companies by 2020, more than 20,000 First Australians will have jobs,” Minister Scullion said.
“Under the EPI, the Government helps companies with any additional costs of employing and retaining disadvantaged, long-term unemployed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
“Sodexo is a shining example of a major company that already has an outstanding record of Indigenous employment but it is prepared to stretch further to provide even more opportunities for First Australians.
“Sodexo Australia already employs more than 300 First Australians and I congratulate the company for committing to employ a further 400 Indigenous staff by the end of its EPI Agreement. Most of these jobs will be full time and in metropolitan, regional and remote parts of the country.
“Sodexo Australia’s current Indigenous employment rate is 8 per cent – already well beyond the parity rate of 3 per cent – and it expects it to rise to 20 per cent by the end of 2019-20. This is a great example of how the EPI can help companies with proven track records of Indigenous employment to create even more opportunities for First Australians.”
Sodexo Australia’s Country President, Nick O’Callaghan, said Sodexo was pleased to make the commitment to the EPI.
“We see participation in the Australian Government’s Employment Parity Initiative as fully supporting Sodexo’s ongoing programmes to help bring sustainable and meaningful change to Australia’s traditional owners,” Mr O’Callaghan said.
“Sodexo has a proud track-record of providing clear school-to-work pathways for Indigenous students via Vocational Training and Employment Centre traineeships as well as trades apprenticeships. Our participation in the EPI will help Sodexo extend the reach and benefits of these programmes.”