My adjournment matter is for the attention of the Minister for Training and Skills. The action I seek from the minister is for him to visit Warrnambool in my electorate to see firsthand the issues facing the south-west, in particular the high youth unemployment rate, and to discuss what actions the Andrews government can take to improve job opportunities for all Victorians.
Western Victoria is a vast region which takes in large regional towns, including Warrnambool, and the slightly smaller towns of Portland and Hamilton. Unemployment and school attainment is of great concern to many community members. In the south-west region unemployment under the previous government skyrocketed. Sadly as a result we are now facing extremely high unemployment rates. In fact youth unemployment has risen above 20 per cent. The south-west region has very low education attainment rates which, coupled with high rates of teen pregnancy, risks seeing the unemployment rate continue to be an outlying figure in comparison to the rest of the state.
I strongly believe it is the role of government to support those who are the most disadvantaged and not abandon them and make things more difficult by limiting their opportunities, as was the practice of the previous Liberal government. I look forward to the minister visiting Warrnambool with me to discuss this very important matter further.