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News 13 August 2020

Next steps for retrenched apprentices and trainees

The introduction of Stage 4 restrictions has had a catastrophic impact on Victorian businesses. As businesses determine whether they are considered ‘Permitted Work Premises,’ and if they are, how they must modify their operations over the next six weeks, we can’t forget about the impact this is likely to have on the apprentices and trainees employed by these businesses.

The Coronavirus pandemic has seen a sharp reduction in the number of new apprentices and trainees being hired. The Victorian Chamber saw a 60 per cent year-on-year decline in new sign-ups in Victoria at the beginning of the crisis. Equally concerning was the large number of apprentices and trainees who were in training but lost their jobs, as employers weren’t in a financial position to keep them on.

How to help your apprentice or trainee if you had to let them go:

The Retrenched Apprentices and Trainees Program has been created in response to this challenge. The program aims to assist apprentices and trainees who have lost their employment, to complete their training.

Apprentices and trainees who have been ‘let go’ during the pandemic are encouraged to register their interest in the program. Once registered, they will be assisted until placed with a host employer through a Group Training Organisation (GTO), or placed directly with another employer.

How can you help apprentices and trainees as we start to rebuild our economy?

Employers who have job vacancies for apprentices or trainees can also register their interest through the Retrenched Apprentices and Trainees Program and will be matched with suitable candidates to interview. Employers may also be eligible for Federal Government incentives (such as the Supporting Apprentice and Trainee wage subsidy).

The Victorian Chamber is supporting the delivery of this program which is being managed by the Apprenticeship Employment Network (AEN).

To register for the Retrenched Apprentices and Trainees Program and for further information, contact the Victorian Chamber’s Apprenticeship Support Australia team, or visit AEN’s website. 

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