MS TIERNEY (Western Victoria—Minister for Training and Skills, Minister for Higher Education) (12:10:070:): Today I rise to talk about the Andrews Labor government’s positive plan in providing more opportunities to support Victorians to get the skills they need for the jobs that we are creating. On Sunday I was pleased to join the Premier and the member for Essendon, Danny Pearson, at Kangan Institute’s new Essendon health hub to announce funding for an extra 10 000 places across the Victorian TAFE network and training system.
We know that the work and careers of many Victorians have been disrupted and that the cost of living is a daily challenge. This $61.6 million investment will give more Victorians the opportunity to get new skills for a secure and rewarding career. Even if Victorians already have another qualification, including a degree, they will now be eligible to take up these places. These extra training places will boost Victorian industry by providing a pipeline of highly skilled workers for the jobs now and into the future in areas from health care and early childhood education to hospitality, construction and trades. The health and social services sector in particular is in need of an extra pipeline. That is why we made this important announcement at the new health hub in Essendon.
Whether it be nursing, mental health, pathology, aged care, disability or community services, there are so many fantastic careers that await. That is why we are not only introducing these extra places but building the very best health facilities in Essendon, at the new health facility at GOTAFE, which Minister Symes recently opened, in Broadmeadows and in Frankston. Everywhere you go we are investing to make sure that the health and social services sector gets the workforce it needs.