Trainees and apprentices in NSW will have access to over $6 million to help complete their courses with the NSW Government today announcing a major increase in subsidies for travel and accommodation.
Minister for Skills John Barilaro said the Vocational Training Assistance Scheme (VTAS) accommodation subsidy will double from $28 per night to $56 per night and the fuel subsidy will increase from 12c to 33c per kilometre.
“We want to make sure apprentices and trainees have the support they need to complete their training by making it easier for them to travel and to stay somewhere if they’re attending training away from home,” Mr Barilaro said.
“The subsidies have been inadequate for years, with regional trainees and apprentices ignored by previous Labor governments. The accommodation subsidy hasn’t moved since 2005 and the travel allowance unchanged since 2001.
“From 1 July we’re increasing subsidies and removing yet another obstacle that might hold back apprentices and trainees from completing their studies.”
NSW Deputy Premier Troy Grant said this would particularly benefit regional NSW where trainees and apprentices face long travel distances.
“Now they can stay in the regions and work where they live and be supported when they need to travel more than 120 kilometres to continue their training at a TAFE campus,” Mr Grant said.
“We’re acknowledging that people who put the initiative and hard work into making a go of a new job deserve extra support to make that new start.
“With rising costs of living, these subsidies will ease some of the financial pressure and make sure vocational training remains a viable proposition, particularly for regional people who need to travel long distances to train.
“Trades are vital to our regional communities and we’re removing a significant barrier to the development of tomorrow’s workforce.’’
Increases to Vocational Training Assistance Scheme subsidies will take effect from Friday 1 July 2016 and more information is available on the Training Services NSW website.