The federal Labor MP for Lyons Brian Mitchell has used National Skills Week to call for the restoration of the Trades Training Centre construction program.
Under the program, the federal government built trades training centres which were then handed to state governments to run.
“Unfortunately, Tony Abbott killed the program when the Liberals came to office in 2013. It’s a great shame because some of the centres that Labor built, including Sorell in Tasmania’s south-east, are going gangbusters.
“Rebuilding TAFE is at the centre of Labor’s training and skills plan, but I am stating that restoring the Trades Training Centre program should be part of that plan,” Mr Mitchell said.
“Now is the right time to be building more trades training centres. They’d be a much better use of taxpayers’ money than funding $175,000 pool deck renovations.”
Mr Mitchell said National Skills Week was a time when we should be celebrating the great contribution that trades and training makes to Australia.
“Instead, we are facing massive skills shortages in key sectors as a direct result of massive cuts over 7 years of incompetent Liberal government,” Mr Mitchell said.
“More than 140,000 apprenticeships and traineeships have disappeared since 2013 and $3 billion has been cut from TAFE – that’s the Liberal record.
“All at a time when employers are desperately crying out for more skilled workers, and when young people are desperate for good jobs.
“In Tasmania we have lost more than 419 apprentices and trainees since the Liberals came to office. By locking young Australians out of training opportunities, Scott Morrison is locking them out jobs.
“Labor’s different - we know education and jobs go hand in hand.
“Every parent knows a good education is a golden ticket to a lifetime of opportunity for their kids.”