Sixteen hundred jobs for First Australians will be created by 2019 through a partnership between the Australian Government and one of Australia’s leading companies, Woolworths Limited.
Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion, said today Woolworths already employed 2000 First Australians and its commitment to hire an additional 1600 was the biggest jobs commitment to date under the Government’s Employment Parity Initiative (EPI).
“I congratulate Woolworths for the leadership it is showing in helping to close the employment gap and it’s great to see the jobs will be spread across various parts of the business – including customer service, bakeries, delicatessens, apparel and homewares,” Minister Scullion said.
“Importantly, 85 per cent of the jobs will go to disadvantaged jobseekers and be located across the country in cities, towns and remote locations.”
Minister Scullion said the additional jobs would increase Woolworths’ Indigenous employment rate from the current 1.1 per cent to 2.1 per cent – closer to the parity rate of 3 per cent.
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.
The Government has now signed EPI agreements with 10 companies across the country to provide 6815 jobs for First Australians.
Woolworths Limited Chief Executive Officer, Brad Banducci, said today’s announcement reflected Woolworths’ commitment to increasing diversity and employment opportunities across the company.
“Our stores make great training grounds for the leaders of tomorrow and Woolworths is committed to ensuring our team reflects the local communities they serve,” Mr Banducci said.
“We are proud to be one of Australia’s biggest employers of Indigenous workers but I believe we can do more to support Indigenous Australians and open up more employment opportunities for them in our business.”