Pacific workers

Australia looks to Pacific to fill staff gaps

The federal government has expanded the Pacific Australian Labour Mobility Scheme to include aged care, hospitality and tourism industries in a bid to address workforce shortfalls.

A Committee for Economic Development of Australia report says the country needs to find an extra 35,000 aged care workers per year.

In Western Australia's south, six Fijian aged care workers have filled some of the vacant, much-needed positions caring for the elderly.

The workers were the first to arrive under the expanded PALM scheme.

History-making researcher calls for more voices of Pacific workers

Angie Enoka recently completed her Doctorate of Philosophy, examining media coverage of New Zealand's Recognised Seasonal Employer or RSE scheme.

Her work was the first doctoral study to look at media coverage of the scheme and one of the few Pasifika-researcher-led studies on any aspect of it.

Ms Enoka, who will graduate on 24 June, will also become the first Samoan fa'afafine with a PHD.

Her latest research analysed over 115 articles from regional newspapers and she said it showed the voices of the workers were lost.

Innovative RSE scheme 10 years young

The RSE scheme was established in 2007 and allows the horticulture and viticulture industries to recruit workers from overseas for seasonal work when there are not enough New Zealand workers.

Over the last ten years, the scheme has grown not only in the number of participant employers and workers, but in economic benefits that have gone beyond New Zealand to the wider Pacific.