AS we watch the end of Toyota, Ford and Holdens being manufactured in Australia, and the loss of thousands of jobs and, most importantly, apprenticeship opportunities for our future tradespeople, we have to ask why?
Along with thousands of others I left school at 14 years of age and there was a wide choice of jobs and apprenticeships available. So I took on painting and decorating.
Why was there a big choice of apprenticeships? The simple and honest answer – we were cheap labour.
However, you knew this before you took on a trade and you knew at the end of five years you would be a qualified tradesman, as it was in those days.
Bosses weren’t stupid as they taught us and received the benefits eventually as you learnt the trade.
So in Australia have we gradually destroyed job security by demanding too much compared with the countries our Ford, Holden and Toyotas will be made in and delivered back to us on the wharves when we could have made them here in Australia?