Hundreds of cleaning industry employees are being deprived of critical training due to a lack of training organisations in Western Australia. After the cleaning industry has been battling for years to have the minimum weekly hours worked reduced from 20 to 15, there are no registered training organisations (RTOs) with the resources to deliver the programs.
Shannon Daniels, Cleaning Council WA state president said, “For nine years, the Association has been trying to get the number of hours required to be a trainee reduced from 20 to 15 hours per week. The reason for this request was that 90 percent of the work force is part time. Until this year, when the new award came into effect, the average shift for cleaners was three hours.
“Unfortunately, in the years leading up to this change, because of the limited number of people who were eligible for these traineeships, the industry didn’t support registered training organisations.
“Now we have a situation where the minister has approved a 15 hour traineeship threshold, which is fantastic, but no trainers are available to carry out the programs. At the end of 2010, Polytechnic West, which has been the only organisation able to carry out these courses, decided to discontinue their course.”
Cleaning Council WA, and its predecessor BSCAAWA, has been instrumental in having the eligibility rules changed, only to find the training facilities have been discontinued. While the eastern states benefit from a large number of RTOs, the situation in Perth is the opposite, Daniels pointed out.
“It’s critical that the cleaning industry and the RTOs work together to find a solution so traineeships can be delivered to secure a new workforce ahead of the coming boom in building services jobs,” Daniels emphasised.
“While there are plenty of people training in other areas, the cleaning industry is being disadvantaged by this lack of organisations prepared to run these courses.
“Simply, the industry can’t get anyone to deliver the training. It’s very disappointing, but highlights a great opportunity for any training organisation who wants to gain a foothold in Western Australia.”
Cleaning Council WA is the Western Australian branch of BSCAA.