May 18, 2012
Asylum seekers Ali Amiripour, Anita Stephen and Kasim Aljfari who are hoping to work in the mining sector. Picture: Nigel Parsons
INVERBRACKIE asylum seekers are the first to trial a free online course to give migrants basic skills to work in mining and resources.
Adelaide company ETRAIN Consulting is developing the course to teach overseas-trained and low-skilled migrants Australian workplace know-how.
Modules range from occupational health and safety standards required on Australian mining sites to understanding lingo such as “smoko” (a smoke break) and “FIFO” (fly-in, fly-out).
The Federal Government has funded the development of the course for migrants to address the shortage of skilled people who can work in the nation’s resources sector.
By 2015, the Minerals Council of Australia estimates that more 70,000 new workers will be needed to fill a range of skilled and unskilled jobs in the resources industry.
Business development consultant Mathew Balic said the course also included resume and interview tips but the key information was 3D simulation of safety techniques.
He said health and safety and risk management were the most important things for any worker to know before working on site.
“We’re developing a resource that has free access, available 24/7, for anyone, but principally migrants, to be employed in mining, oil and gas,” he said.
“These skilled migrants, who come from India or Africa, have degrees in engineering and are perfect candidates.
“Typically, they don’t understand some of the health and safety protocols and they get to the interview stage and don’t understand the acronyms such as JSA (job safety analysis) and how to apply it … ”
The early release candidates from the Inverbrackie Alternative Place of Detention are trialling the course before it is publicly released in July.
They come from a cross-section of skill and cultural backgrounds such as Sri Lanka, Africa and Afghanistan and have mining engineering and environmental management degrees.
The course is designed to help them get a foot in the door.