The invitation came during a meeting between the Federal Minister for Workforce Participation, the Hon Dr Sharman Stone, and industry representatives at Printing Industries national office.
During the hour-long meeting Dr Stone was briefed by Printing Industries CEO Philip Andersen, national policy and research manager Hagop Tchamkertenian, national operations manager Robert Fuller and Offset Alpine human resource manager Stuart Hoogstad.
Dr Stone was told that Printing Industries research showed that labour shortages had become the second most common barrier to increased production levels. This was supported by the latest issue of the Vacancy Report issued by the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations which shows that the printing trade reported the second highest rate of increase in vacancies during the year to April.
The Minister acknowledged the problem and said that opportunities exist for the industry to use the unemployment pool as a potential labour resource to help overcome the shortages. She invited Printing Industries to prepare a plan for the government's consideration using this pool as a basis.
She said a range of government assistance measures were available for printing companies offering employment opportunities to people on welfare. These include wage subsidies and financial assistance for employing a person with a disability.