Earthmoving News, Western Australia

Streamlining driver’s licences for young WA construction workers

A hardhat on the dashboard of a car

The Western Australian Government is introducing a new driver’s licence training initiative to remove barriers for young people training in the building and construction industry.

The Construction Training Fund’s $1.26 million Driver’s Licence Training Support Program gives students the opportunity to obtain a driver’s licence while ensuring apprentices entering the construction workforce are job ready.

A driver’s licence is a key requirement for many construction roles. Access to a driver’s licence was identified as a key barrier to apprenticeship employment for young people at the State Government’s 2021 Skills Summit.

The pilot program offers standard driver training and supervision to help participants gain a valid Western Australian driver’s licence.

In addition, specialised training for driving in a construction environment – such as towing, safe management of vehicle loads, vehicle maintenance, and driving in the sand – will assist young people to develop awareness and skills in road safety and vehicle management.

Premier Mark McGowan said the WA Government was committed to help create a pipeline of skilled workers, now and for the future.

“By helping construction industry trainees to get their driver’s licence, we’re providing practical support that will remove barriers to employment while helping to boost the workforce,” he said.

“This important initiative is putting apprentices in the driver’s seat – ensuring they’re job ready when they complete their training.”

Training Minister Simone McGurk said: “It’s often said learning to drive gives us the keys to freedom – but for many young workers getting a driver’s licence is also the key to employment. It can be truly life changing.

“The mobile nature of construction work makes having a driver’s licence a necessity for most roles – and as a government we want to remove any barriers that prevent people from entering the industry.

“This initiative gives young workers starting out in building and construction valuable life skills, ensuring they’re ready to hit the ground running when they complete their training.”

The Driver’s Licence Training Support Program will be available to 120 students, with 18 students currently participating in the first cohort.

The initiative is open to Year 11 and 12 students in the Construction Training Fund Scholarship Program, to supplement their pre-apprenticeship training.

For more information on the program, click here.

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