Back to Work program delivering good jobs for Queensland’s youth
Published Sunday, 12 November, 2023 at 02:03 PM
Minister for Employment and Small Business, Minister for Training and Skills Development and Minister for Youth Justice
The Honourable Di Farmer
- An independent review of the Queensland Government’s Back to Work Program has confirmed it is delivering good jobs for Queenslanders and workplace confidence for businesses across the state.
- For each dollar spent ($1) on the Back to Work program, there is an estimated return of up to $2.24 to businesses and individuals.
- Back to Work’s best success is with ages 15–19 with 94.8% remaining in paid employment.
An independent evaluation of the program by Deloitte Access Economics has found that from each dollar spent ($1) on the Back to Work program, there is an estimated return of up to $2.24 to businesses and individuals.
Back to Work provides incentive payments to eligible employers who employ a previously unemployed Queenslander from an eligible group, which are youth (15 to 24 year olds), Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons, persons with disability and the long term unemployed.
The evaluation also found two-thirds (66 per cent) of employment supported under Back to Work represents new jobs for disadvantaged cohorts and that these jobs would not have existed without the Back to Work program.
A recent Queensland Government Statisticians Office survey of Back to Work recipients also showed that around 81 per cent of respondents were still in paid employment at the time of being surveyed.
Since 2016, more than 28,700 Queenslanders have been employed and more than 13,200 businesses supported.
Approximately two-thirds of Back to Work of these jobseekers (almost 19,000) are youth.
As part of the 2021-22 State Budget, the Back to Work program was revitalised and expanded to provide intensive wrap around supports for jobseekers and employers in order to target Queensland’s most vulnerable jobseekers.
More than $140 million was committed to the program for 2021-2025, which is available throughout regional Queensland and in some parts of South East Queensland.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Employment and Small Business, and Minister for Training and Skills Development Di Farmer:
“The results of this evaluation show the impact and importance of the Back to Work program in supporting disadvantaged jobseekers, including youth, into employment.
“The evaluation also found that over 80% of employers that were surveyed said they had made changes to their workplace to support longer-term workplace inclusivity, so the program will continue to have ongoing impact.
“Programs such as Back to Work, along with the Skilling Queenslanders for Work initiative and the new workforce programs implemented as part of the Good people. Good jobs: Queensland Workforce Strategy 2022-2032 are continuing to make a real difference to jobseekers and employers across the State.
“Moreton Bay business owners Meg and Ray were able to access the $20,000 Youth Boost Incentive payment under the Back to Work Program and hired Ana, a young jobseeker with an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural background.
“Meg says, they really struck gold with Ana, who is now part of the family, and they hope to keep her long into the future.
“Employing Ana has enabled the business owners to focus on other areas of their business and expand.
“I encourage employers and jobseekers to contact our network of Back to Work officers across Queensland to access the support available.”
Explainer/fast fact and or further information:
- The Back to Work program is designed to give businesses the confidence to employ Queenslanders who have experienced a period of unemployment and help workers facing disadvantage in the labour market.
- The program has been expanded to ensure it continues to remain relevant and responsive to the needs of Queensland businesses and jobseekers and is available throughout regional Queensland and in some parts of South East Queensland (SEQ).
- Eligible employees for a Back to Work Employer Incentive payment include:
- a young person aged 15-24
- an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander person
- a person with disability
- a long-term unemployed person (previously unemployed for 52 weeks or longer).
- Employers have access to two support payments:
- Youth Boost ($20,000): To hire a job seeker aged 15-24 who was previously unemployed for a minimum of eight weeks.
- Back to Work Support Payment ($15,000): To hire a jobseeker from the identified targeted groups previously unemployed for a minimum of eight weeks.
- For more information, please visit Home - Back to Work (initiatives.qld.gov.au)
Media contact – Gary Shipway 0458 090 906