First Samoan Seasonal Workers ready to depart for Australia
APIA: 19 May 2012: The Governments of Samoa and Australia are pleased to announce that the first workers from Samoa will soon arrive in Australia under the Pacific Seasonal Worker Pilot Scheme.
The first Samoan seasonal workers will be assisting with the citrus harvest in South Australia, picking oranges.
The 60 Samoan seasonal workers will depart Samoa in two groups over the coming weeks. They will be employed by the Australian Approved Employer, MADEC.
Samoa Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi states “from the Government’s perspective, we are most grateful for the opportunity for our people to gain seasonal employment which not only helps their families but their villages, local communities, the Government and the country as a whole.
The Government of Samoa in recognising the importance of this relationship now being forged between itself and the Government of Australia will undertake to render support where possible in mobilising our people but at the same time will do all to ensure that the opportunities are not wasted through the commitment of the workers.
The Government of Samoa itself will not hesitate to pull out any worker who does not comply with the requirements of the scheme and who does not perform in accordance to the expectations of the Employers.
Similar to the RSE Scheme the Government of Samoa will not tolerate offenders and absconders”.
The money the seasonal workers will send home to Samoa and the skills they will learn in Australia will assist Samoan families and communities.
“The Samoan workers will provide a reliable, returning seasonal workforce to Australian employers who have difficulty sourcing local labour,” Australian High Commissioner Dr Stephen Henningham said.
“Australia looks forward to welcoming more Samoan seasonal workers in the future.”
The ongoing Seasonal Workers Program commences on 1 July this year, building on the success of the Pacific Seasonal Worker Pilot Scheme.
Seasonal workers will be employed in accordance with Australian laws and will receive the same entitlements as Australians.
The Samoan seasonal workers will be protected and supported while in Australia by their Approved Employer, the Australian Government and the local community, and receive comprehensive briefings before their departure and on arrival in Australia.
Further information about the Pacific Seasonal Worker Pilot Scheme is available at www.deewr.gov.au/pswps