Tasmania Senator Eric Abetz believes young unemployed people should take on any task for work.DARREN LINTON May 27, 2014 3:22am
Tasmania Senator Eric Abetz has urged young people who find themselves unemployed to pick fruit or work on a dairy to make ends meet.
Defending unpopular changes to Newstart that would force people under the age of 30 to wait six months before receiving unemployment benefits, Senator Abetz said they should be prepared to take on any task.
Speaking of his home state, Senator Abetz said 90 per cent of pickers for the apple harvest were from overseas.
Fruit Growers Victoria general manager John Wilson said in the Goulburn Valley the figure was about 80 per cent and most were backpackers trying to earn an extra year on the their working holiday visa.
Mr Wilson said fruitpicking was seasonal and regional, requiring dislocation, which was not an issue for backpackers who made it part of their travel experience.
‘‘When you take people out of their support networks and shunt them into a district as temporary labour you are going to create other social problems,’’ he said.
A picker doing piece work could make $860 a week before tax.
‘‘We would always welcome Australian workers, however if there is a significant clerical burden involved, the government would be incentifying growers to hire foreign workers,’’ Mr Wilson said.
United Dairyfarmers of Victoria president Tyran Jones agreed dairy work was a good option for young workers, even urban dwellers who thought milk came from a carton.
‘‘We’ve had people who have come from quite urban backgrounds who have worked out to be very good at milking cows,’’ he said.
The industry ran its own National Centre for Dairy Education that offered advanced training for employees, but he said people could start at the bottom and learn on the job.
‘‘The biggest factors are being reliable and willing to learn,’’ he said.
‘‘On a dairy farm you can’t to afford to have people not turn up.’’
Coca-Cola Amatil has confirmed it will be pressing on with its $100 million redevelopment of SPC Ardmona.
Beautiful weather greeted Tungamah residents for the 18th running of the Tungamah Lions Ten Thousand on Sunday.
When Keith and Marion Grumley and their growing family moved to Tatura on January 18, 1968, little did they know that it would be the start of a long and lasting connection to the town.
A snake was spotted this afternoon.
Rochester Rotary Club has celebrated its 50th birthday in style.
Sorting future of Campaspe pools
A theatre production with a difference is coming to Seymour.
Local athletes will go head-to-head with some of the best competitors from around the world in swimming and athletics in December.
District residents and visitors will be able to enjoy some of the region’s most beautiful private gardens on Sunday.
The 116th annual Cobram Show went off with a bang at the weekend, drawing in crowds from far and wide for two days of fun.
Tomorrow is a Total Fire Ban day in Deniliquin, meaning no fires can be lit in the open and all fire permits are suspended.
Fifty new full-time jobs will be created at Tatura with a multimillion-dollar expansion of the abattoirs expected to be announced today.
Remembering Australian political giant Gough Whitlam who once called on Benalla police to stop then Treasurer Frank Crean on his journey up the Hume to phone the PM.
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