First-year Haynes Mechanical diesel fitter apprentice Beau Blyton would welcome a pay boost.
First-year Haynes Mechanical diesel fitter apprentice Beau Blyton would welcome a pay boost. Peter Holt

More money in pockets

APPRENTICES earning as little as $10 an hour are set to receive a pay boost as part of reforms which will streamline apprenticeships across the country.

The national apprenticeship system will also make it possible for apprentices to move interstate and have their training recognised, under reforms announced yesterday.

Workplace Relations and Skills Minister Chris Evans yesterday said the government would take a series of steps over the next two years to revolutionise the apprenticeship system.

He said the system needed to be simplified as some training took 24 months in one state and up to 48 months in another.

A wage boost for lowly paid apprentices is also high on the agenda with the Federal Government putting forward a "strong submission" to Fair Work Australia, which is reviewing training wages and conditions. The award wage for a first-year apprentice is $10.22 an hour, although some employers do pay more.

Beau Blyton, of Calen, is a Haynes Mechanical diesel fitter apprentice and said surviving on a first-year wage was tough.

"It's hard to live on because you have to pay for fuel but it's easier to live at home," he said.

Earlier this year, the government also announced measures to allow apprentices to gain their formal qualification sooner if they completed competencies early.

 

APPRENTICE REFORM

  •  Review of apprentice wages and conditions. Award wage for a first-year is $10.22 an hour
  •  Streamlining of apprenticeships across the states, including training duration
  •  Review of government's $1.1 billion apprenticeships incentives program amid concerns some employers use them as a wage subsidy and not training
  •  A national apprenticeships program for semi-skilled workers to get trade qualified in 18 months


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