Changes announced to the Seasonal Worker Programme will provide significant benefits to Calare agricultural employers and industries while also contributing to the economic development of Pacific Island countries and Timor-Leste.
Federal Member for Calare, John Cobb, has announced the expansion of the programme from primarily horticulture to the broader agricultural sector, increasing the types of low and unskilled jobs included under the programme. “The Seasonal Worker Programme has been highly effective in helping Australian businesses overcome seasonal labour shortages” he said; “Employers in a range of agriculture industries including cattle, sheep, grain and mixed enterprises will now be able to apply to be part of the Seasonal Worker Programme.”
Mr Cobb said these changes to the Special Program visa (subclass 416) means more agricultural businesses in Calare will benefit during peak periods when labour can be in short supply. “This is good news for local farming enterprises that now have more options for seasonal labour and can plan for their harvests and other busy periods with much greater certainty,” he said.
The programme also offers seasonal labour to employers in selected locations in the accommodation industry who can’t meet their labour needs with local jobseekers. Critical safeguards are built into the programme, such as the requirement for employers
to fully test the local job market before they can apply to recruit workers under the programme.
“While we are determined to ensure businesses across Australia have access to the seasonal workers they need, we are equally determined that no Australian misses out on a job” Mr Cobb said. Since 1st July 2012, over 8600 visas have been issued to people under the programme
to support the seasonal labour needs of around 70 approved employers.
To apply to recruit seasonal workers visit www.employment.gov.au/information-employers-how-recruit-seasonal-workers.
For more information about the Seasonal Worker Programme visit www.employment.gov.au/seasonal-worker-programme.