Aged Care Industry Labour Agreement Announced & In Effect
Australia is facing a significant demographic shift, with a rapidly aging population that is expected to place increased pressure on the country’s aged care system. To ensure that older Australians receive the care and support they need, the Australian Government has made a firm commitment to increasing the aged care workforce.
To support this commitment, the government has announced an Aged Care Industry Labour Agreement which will allow employers to sponsor direct care workers on skilled visas through the Aged Care Industry Labour Agreement instead of having to negotiate company specific labour agreements for each individual aged care provider.
Occupations eligible for sponsorship under the Aged Care Industry Labour Agreement
Once a labour agreement has been established, employers will be able to utilise the Temporary Skill Shortage (subclass 482) visa in direct care occupations such as:
- Nursing Support Worker
- Personal Care Assistant
- Aged or Disabled Carer
Pathways to permanent residency for sponsored employees
The agreement has allowed for sponsored overseas workers to apply for permanent residency under the Employer Nominated Scheme (subclass 186) visa program if they have completed at least two years of work experience in a relevant direct care occupation.
Interestingly, the two years of work experience is not tied to a particular employer or visa subclass.
How to apply for the Aged Care Industry Labour Agreement
Aged care providers will be required to first entere into an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with one of the following unions:
- Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF);
- Health Services Union (HSU); or
- United Workers Union (UWU).
Once a MoU has been established with one of the above approved unions, aged care providers can proceed to preparing and submitting an application for the Aged Care Industry Labour Agreement (ACILA) with the Department of Home Affairs.
What are the eligibility requirements, criteria and concessions for the Aged Care Industry Labour Agreement?
Concessions to standard skilled visa requirements:
- two year pathway to permanent residence through the Employer Nomination Scheme
- streamlined visa nomination and priority visa application processing
- no post qualification work experience requirement
- English language concessions for workers with relevant community language skills
- annual salary of at least $51,222 AUD or the Australian Market Salary Rate, whichever is higher
Main visa application requirements
- hold a relevant AQF Certificate III or equivalent, or higher qualification. You can also have 12 months of relevant work experience or part time equivalence.
- obtain a positive skills assessment from the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Accreditation Council or the Australian Community Workers Association if you obtained your qualifications overseas. This also applies if you claim work experience in lieu of the formal qualifications.
- have an English language proficiency level of at least IELTS 5.0 or equivalent. Workers with target community language skills employed by culturally and linguistically diverse aged care providers need at least IELTS 4.5 or equivalent.
Labour Market Testing (LMT) requirements will be considered met once aged care providers have entered into an MoU with the relevent union(s).
The skill and qualification requirements will differ from those outlined in the ANZSCO. The specific requirements will be outlined under the terms of each labour agreement approved by the Department of Home Affairs.
More information & assistance
If you are an aged care provider looking to establish a Aged Care Industry Labour Agreement please contact our office by making an enquiry online, emailing us, or calling our office directly on 1300 083 843.