THE WHITSUNDAY Coast Chamber of Commerce is working on a project to attract and keep more workers in the region, in the face of severe shortages.
The project is a localised immigration scheme known as the DAMA.
The DAMA allows a specific geography, in this case the Greater Whitsunday Region, to identify which roles cannot be filled by the existing workforce and allows for an easing of the application requirements for existing visa schemes.
For example, a subclass 182 Visa holder can have a higher age and a lower level of English language.
The DAMA also allows for a permanent path to residency for some Visa schemes.
There are currently 13 other DAMA programs operating in Australia, including Cairns Chamber of Commerce and Townsville Enterprises Limited, which have been a success.
In order for local businesses, and the community at large, to take advantage of this opportunity, it requires a co-ordinated response and some financial support.
There needs to be in excess of 100 businesses engaged via a four-minute online survey to understand their current staffing requirements and how this program could benefit them.
The chamber will also be seeking financial support from business to fund person(s) to assist with this process and get the program up and running.
“This is a tangible opportunity for local businesses to help alleviate the specific worker shortages in our area and ensure the region remains competitive attracting workers,” a chamber spokesperson said.
Contact the chamber for more information.