03/12/2010 - 14:36

FMG takes on Fitzroy Crossing graduates

03/12/2010 - 14:36

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Fortescue Metals Group has taken another step toward meeting its pledge to find jobs for at least 300 Aboriginal workers, recruiting 11 Fitzroy Crossing graduates from its Vocational Training and Employment Centre in Port Hedland.

FMG takes on Fitzroy Crossing graduates

Fortescue Metals Group has taken another step toward meeting its pledge to find jobs for at least 300 Aboriginal workers, recruiting 11 Fitzroy Crossing graduates from its Vocational Training and Employment Centre in Port Hedland.

Fortescue said the 11 graduates from Fitzroy Crossing would start work with mining contractor Downer EDI Mining at its Christmas Creek mine within the next fortnight, after completing an eight week training program delivered in collaboration with the Fitzroy Crossing-based Men's Shed training facility.

Fortescue has pledged to employ at least 25 people from Fitzroy Crossing as part of its broader commitment to the Australian Employment Covenant to provide 300 jobs for Aboriginal people and to maximise employment opportunities with its contractors.

Fortescue's VTEC development manager Damian Ardagh said the commitment of 25 guaranteed jobs was made as a tangible outcome for people who entered the Men's Shed program.

"Without employment prospects as an incentive, the success of the community's rejuvenation through the installation of the Men's Shed would have been undermined," Mr Ardagh said.

"This program represents a significant collaboration between the mining sector, government and TAFE to provide essential training for Aboriginal people in Fitzroy Crossing, leading to long-term sustainable employment."

Mr Ardagh said funding for the program had been sourced from the Department of Employment Education and Workplace Relations through the Structured Training Employment Program and its job networks, as well as through Fortescue and Downer.

The Australian Employment Covenant was launched by Fortescue founder Andrew Forrest and former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in 2008 with the aim of creating 50,000 indigenous jobs within two years.

A study by the Australian National University released last month found that around 2800 indigenous people had found work under the scheme to date.

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