LNP plan to fix broken training system for Capricorn & Rockhampton Youth

Friday, 4th September 2020

Cutting youth unemployment and boosting training opportunities that lead to jobs is a key plank in the LNP’s economic recovery plan revealed in the Capricorn region.

LNP Shadow Minister for Employment, Small Business, Training and Skills Development Fiona Simpson visited a local butcher’s shop in Parkhurst today, to talk with a small businessman who employs apprentices about the LNP plan to boost training linked to jobs.

“We don’t want to see a generation of young people lost to a lifetime of unemployment queues and social welfare dependency. We are focussed on helping them confidently find a career and training that is linked to jobs so they can live full lives and contribute to the rebuilding of the Queensland economy,” Ms Simpson said.

“The training system was broken in Queensland before COVID and now due to COVID it urgently needs to be fixed for the sake of everyone who has lost their job.

“A Frecklington LNP Government will establish a Capricorn Region Jobs and Skills Board under a Queensland Industry Skills Council to help drive the transformation of local training, so people can get the right training that links to jobs not just qualifications.

“This board will give business and employers, training and employee representatives a seat at the table with a direct link to the Minister to focus on getting people into jobs and training linked to jobs.

“It will assess local training shortages, as every region has different needs, and help drive the solutions with State Government support.

“Before COVID hit, Central Queensland had high long-term unemployed rates of 2800 people, an increase of 2100 since the Labor Government was elected in 2015. 

“More than 234,000 people are out of work across Queensland and 8200 of them are here in Central Queensland, which is an increase of 1000 people locally in the last year.

“A Deb Frecklington LNP Government would build a stronger economy to create jobs, boost apprenticeship numbers and ensure more young people to qualifications and skills to help drag Queensland out of recession.

“The fact that there had been a 33% fall in the number of people completing job qualifications at a time of high long-term unemployment – before COVID – was a classic indication that it was time for a change in state government and training policies.

“The Palaszczuk Labor Government doesn’t have an economic plan to create more jobs while traineeships and apprenticeships numbers have fallen off a cliff.

“When it comes to training and vocational education, Labor is all talk and no action.

“There are less Queensland students in training and less students completing their courses.

“Data from National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) showed that course completions between December 2014 and December 2019 declined by 32.7% or 10,890.

“Queensland has the worst unemployment rate in the country, the highest number of long-term unemployed workers and the highest youth unemployment rate in Australia.

“The LNP will ensure young people get the training they need for the jobs that are needed in a wide-range of industries.

“Unlike Labor, a future LNP Government will deliver the skills that employers need, not training for the sake of it.

“Under an LNP Government businesses will have the confidence to invest in young Queenslanders and train our future workforce.

“Our economic plan includes policies such as investing in road infrastructure to stimulate the economy, building the drought busting New Bradfield Scheme, building dams to improve water and food security and a no new tax guarantee to support private sector investment.”

LNP Candidate for Keppel Adrian De Groot said youth unemployment rate has reached crisis levels of 15.7% on average in regional Queensland.

“Labor’s glossy brochures can’t hide the fact that apprenticeship and traineeship commencements and completions are in freefall,” Mr De Groot said.

LNP Candidate for Rockhampton Tony Hopkins said local apprentices and trainees aren’t given the resources to upskill at a time when having a job has never been more important

“I’ve seen how beneficial it is to have a strong pathway for young Queenslanders to get the training they need to land a decent job,” Mr Hopkins said.

“I will continue to fight for more local jobs and a training system that doesn’t fail our young people.”


  • The latest (Dec 2019) National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) data revealed that commencements have declined by 1,415 or 3.8% in the last year.
  • Between December 2014 and December 2019 NCVER data showed that commencements declined by 10.6% or 4,310.
  • There are also 12,080 fewer Queenslanders ‘in-training’ between December 2014 and December 2019 (17.9% reduction).
  • Completions between December 2014 and December 2019 declined by 32.7% or 10,890.