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Friday, 29 April 2016: Woolworths Limited is set to almost double its Indigenous workforce over the next three years as part of an initiative supported by the Federal Government.

Woolworths Limited CEO, Brad Banducci, and Federal Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Senator Nigel Scullion, today announced Woolworths will recruit an additional 1,600 Indigenous workers over three years as part of the new Woolworths Employment Parity Initiative.

Woolworths currently employs 2,000 Indigenous workers and, as a result of the Employment Parity Initiative, is on track to becoming one of Australia’s biggest employers of Indigenous workers.

The recruitment drive has been made possible due to Woolworths’ partnership with Diversity Dimensions, which has received Federal Government funding to train, support and mentor Indigenous employees.

Mr Banducci and Senator Scullion launched the Employment Parity Initiative at Woolworths’ Redfern supermarket in central Sydney today and were joined by the CEO of Diversity Dimensions Carolyn Galloway and Woolworths team members participating in the initiative. 

Mr Banducci said today’s announcement reflects Woolworths’ commitment to increasing diversity and employment opportunities across the company.

“Our stores make great training grounds for the leaders of tomorrow and Woolworths is committed to ensuring our teams reflect the local communities they serve,” Mr Banducci said.

“We are proud to be one of Australia’s biggest employers of Indigenous workers but I believe we can do more to support Indigenous Australians and open up more employment opportunities for them in our business.

“This fantastic initiative would not be possible without the assistance of Diversity Dimensions. I thank them for their support which ensures Woolworths is able to offer these employment opportunities to Indigenous communities across Australia.”

Senator Scullion said: “I congratulate Woolworths for the leadership it is showing in helping to close the 
employment gap and it’s great to see the jobs will be spread across various parts of the business – including customer service, bakeries, delicatessens, apparel and homewares.

“Importantly, 85 per cent of the jobs will go to disadvantaged jobseekers and be located across the country in cities, towns and remote locations.”

Grace Welsh, a participant in the Woolworths Employment Parity Initiative, said: "My experience with this initiative has been remarkable. It's exciting to work at Woolworths because I'm learning so much every day and gaining new skills, which is giving me a confidence I haven't had before."

Woolworths has commenced recruitment for the Employment Parity Initiative. Successful candidates will have the opportunity to work across Woolworths Supermarkets, Dan Murphy’s, BWS and BIG W stores.

 

About the Woolworths Employment Parity Initiative:

  • Woolworths has begun recruiting for its Employment Parity Initiative, which will see 1,600 additional Indigenous workers join the company over the next three years.
  • The agreement forms part of the Federal Government’s Employment Parity Initiative.
  • At a minimum, employment will be for 15-hour casual contracts for three years, with Federal Government funding paid once the employee reaches the latter of 26 weeks or 500 hours.  
  • The Woolworths-Federal Government contract is valued at $18 million, with Woolworths partnering with Diversity Dimensions who will use the funding to assist with the recruitment, placement and mentoring of Indigenous employees. 
  • As part of this initiative Woolworths has committed to becoming a parity employer, aiming for 2.8 per cent of its Australian workforce to identify as an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander in the coming years. 
  • Further information about recruitment can be found at wowcareers.com.au 

 

--ENDS--

MEDIA:
Woolworths Media Relations  - 02 8885 1033
Senator Scullion’s Office - 0429 236 016 (Ben Houston)

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