Scheme worker in­el­i­gi­ble to work

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - AN­DREW BACK­HOUSE

A TOWNSVILLE busi­ness­man is be­mused af­ter be­ing of­fered can­di­dates for an in­tern­ship only to be told the job­seeker he chose was in­el­i­gi­ble.

Shaun Steele, owner of Itara & Ja­cana Apart­ments, said he was ap­proached by re­cruit­ment com­pany Work­ways Aus­tralia with the of­fer of in­terns.

The cho­sen worker would do 100 hours of un­paid work ex­pe­ri­ence and Mr Steele would later re­ceive a wage sub­sidy. The in­tern­ships are part of the De­part­ment of Em­ploy­ment’s Pre­pare- trial- hire ( PaTH) pro­gram.

Mr Steele said af­ter he chose an in­tern he was told she was in­el­i­gi­ble for the po­si­tion.

The in­tern­ships are avail­able to those the Gov­ern­ment con­sid­ers most in need through el­i­gi­bil­ity cri­te­ria which in this case means they have been un­em­ployed for six months. But the cho­sen can­di­date had worked for a short pe­riod af­ter be­ing long- term un­em­ployed and was there­fore in­el­i­gi­ble.

Mr Steele said he was frus­trated that, af­ter be­ing ap­proached by Work­ways, he was un­able to hire the staff mem­ber of his choos­ing.

He was told she would be el­i­gi­ble to start af­ter a five­week pe­riod. Work­ways also stated if she was to start un­paid work straight away that would make her in­el­i­gi­ble for the in­tern­ship.

Mr Steele had al­ready is­sued the staff mem­ber with uni­forms and showed her around the premises when he was told of the is­sue.

He crit­i­cised the bureaucracy which he said de­nied her the job straight away.

“It’s be­cause she tick a box,” he said.

“I thought we were get­ting rid of this pa­per­work.”

Work­ways Aus­tralia chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Bryan McCormick said the com­pany put for­ward a num­ber of can­di­dates and the em­ployer se­lected a can­di­date.

“When we lodged the pa­per­work we found out they would not be el­i­gi­ble for a fur­ther five weeks,” he said.

“We of­fered the em­ployer al­ter­na­tive em­ploy­ees and they de­clined.”

Mr McCormick scheme was a suc­cess”.

“We’ve placed over 20 peo­ple in Townsville and this is the only time we’ve had a prob­lem.”

A spokesman for the De­part­ment of Em­ploy­ment said the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment em­ploy­ment ser­vices were avail­able for all job seek­ers en­ti­tled to work in Aus­tralia.

“How­ever, the level of ser­vices avail­able to job seek­ers de­pends on in­di­vid­ual cir­cum­stances, to en­sure that re­sources are di­rected to those most in need.

“De­part­ment data shows most young job- ac­tive par­tic­i­pants find work within six months of regis­ter­ing.” doesn’t said the “run­away

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