Australia’s TAFE, apprenticeship and skills sector is facing massive cuts under the Turnbull Government that will leave students in Victoria more than $128,000,000 worse off every year.
Federal Member for Ballarat, Catherine King is calling in Malcolm Turnbull to step in and stop these cuts in the May budget.
The National Partnership Agreement on Skills Reform – funded and delivered by the former Labor government – provides vital funding to states and territories to support TAFE, apprenticeship and skills programs.
This $500 million a year national agreement expires on 30 June this year – and the Turnbull Government’s own budget papers show there is nothing to replace it.
“It’s not too late for Malcolm Turnbull to stop this cut – the question is, does he want to?” Ms King said.
“Ripping more money out of our local TAFE and apprenticeship programs will mean higher fees, fewer course options and less industry experience for students.
“The Liberals have cut more than $2.5 billion from skills and training programs and there are 130,000 fewer apprentices in Australia than when they were elected in 2013.
“Coming on top of the cuts already made by the Abbott/Turnbull government, this is a kick in the guts.
“It beggars belief that Malcolm Turnbull’s budget includes a $50 billion tax handout to big business and the banks, but he can’t find $500 million to properly fund TAFE and training programs.
“In contrast Labor would make sure one in ten jobs on priority projects go to an Australian apprentice and restore TAFE to the backbone of our training system.
“This would have a huge impact on our community, helping to overcome our issues with youth unemployment and giving more young Australians the opportunities they need at the beginning of their working lives.
April 13th 2017