Queensland Government Media Releases

Back to Work program to fuel North Queensland jobs bonanza

June 20, 2017

Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations, Minister for Racing and Minister for Multicultural Affairs
The Honourable Grace Grace

Back to Work program to fuel North Queensland jobs bonanza

Employment Minister Grace Grace is urging north Queensland employers to hire a jobseeker and put themselves in line for support payments of up to $20,000 under the Palaszczuk Government’s $177.5 million Back to Work regional jobs program.

“Thousands of regional Queenslanders are now back at work thanks to this great program and I want to encourage North Queensland to get on board now and hire a jobseeker,” she said.

Minister Assisting the Premier on North Queensland and Member for Mundingburra Coralee O’Rourke said people in North Queensland want the same opportunities as everyone else in the state – to work, put food on their table and live safe and happy lives. 

“There is no denying the impact of unemployment on our region. Our government knows this and is turning this around through initiatives like our Back to Work program, which has already found work for 992 North Queenslanders, with many more applications in the pipeline,” Mrs O’Rourke said. 

“By putting people back to work, we are building a future with more certainty and security for locals.” 

Member for Thuringowa Aaron Harper said local employers have so far received more than $4.8 million in support payments, money they can use to help grow their business. 

“The $20,000 Back to Work Youth Boost is already a great success, with 520 locals aged 15-24 now in jobs.” 

Member for Townsville Scott Stewart said the Palaszczuk Government’s decision to extend the $20,000 Youth Boost to 31 October 2017 was an opportunity for local business to take advantage of the program. 

Employment Minister Grace Grace said the Back to Work program will smash the 5,000 jobseekers back in work target this week. 

“And there are a further 846 applications pending approval,” she said. 

Back to Work will also be extended to south east Queensland from 1 July 2017. 

Back to Work Regional Queensland * 

Support payments currently available for eligible employers of up to: 

  • $10,000 for hiring an unemployed worker (specific to regional Queensland, outside South East Queensland)
  • $15,000 for hiring a long-term unemployed worker (a person unemployed for 52 weeks or more)
  • $20,000 Youth Boost for hiring a young jobseeker aged 15-24 years (must be employed by 31 October 2017 (inclusive) 

Back to Work Southeast Queensland * 

From July 1, 2017 

Support payments available for eligible employers of up to:

  • $15,000 for eligible employers who hire a long-term unemployed jobseeker (a person unemployed for 52 weeks or more)
  • $20,000 for a young jobseeker (aged between 15-24 years)
  • To be eligible, employees need to have started work on, or after Saturday 1 July 2017, and have been employed for at least four weeks. 

 *Eligibility criteria applies

Businesses can visit www.qld.gov.au/backtowork or call 13 QGOV (13 74 68) for more information about Back to Work, or to apply for an employer support payment.