Australian unions represent tens of thousands of apprentices, trainees and other workers undertaking work-based training in all industries across the country. We welcome the opportunity to provide feedback on the support provided to apprentices and its impact on the rate of completion of apprenticeships. We also welcome Government action on the issue of declining completion rates after what has been nearly a decade of inaction under the previous government.

This short submission will outline the view of the ACTU that the decline in completions, which is obviously the outcome of a number of complex factors, is at least partially attributable to a failure of the current apprentice support system to provide sufficient and effective support to apprentices and trainees. The Australian Apprentice Support Network system has, on a systemic level, failed to deliver the support necessary to halt or even significantly slow the decline in completions and must be radically reformed.