The use of imported workers over skilled Australian manufacturing workers is set to raise questions following the Gillard government’s biggest foreign labour deal.
It is estimated that closed to 2062 guest workers will be imported for work on sheet metal, painters and scaffolders, all roles that could be undertaken by Australian Workers.
Manufacturing workers asked questions of the Gillard Government, which has a policy of "employ Australian's at home and abroad", asking how it could consider this to be an acceptable situation when skilled manufacturing workers that have been displaced could fill these roles.
Recruitment experts Cape Australia is believed to be recruiting in the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, South Africa, Britain and even the US in an attempt to fill local positions.
The Immigration Department openly admitted that the demand for overseas workers is much higher for any previous labour agreement submission than it has ever previously received.
Gillard said, “we will keep working in enterprise migration agreements to make sure that Australians are always at the front of the queue, that they are always the ones to get the opportunities growing from these resource projects,”
She went on to say “that's why we will create a jobs board, make use of it conditional for future agreements, and we will be strengthening oversight, because we will always put Australian jobs first”.