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Updating New England North West on Skilled Migration

The new Immigration Department’s Regional Outreach Officer for the Regional Migration Initiative, Rhett Henkel
The new Immigration Department’s Regional Outreach Officer for the Regional Migration Initiative, Rhett Henkel
A week-long series of seminars to discuss recent changes to Employer Sponsored Visas will be jointly presented by Regional Development Australia Northern Inland (RDANI) and Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC). Touring across the New England North West region, the seminars will commence on Monday 16 November and attendance is free.

Four consecutive information sessions will run from 5:30pm-7:30pm at the following venues:                     
The Best Western All Settlers Motor Inn, Tamworth on Monday 16 November;
The Country Comfort Motel, Armidale on Tuesday 17 November;
The Inverell RSM Club, on Wednesday 18 November; and
The Max Conference Centre, Moree on Thursday 19 November.
“The former Northern Inland Regional Development Board received funding from the NSW Government to act as a certifying body for employer sponsored visas. As the Board’s successor, Regional Development Australia Northern Inland has secured funding support from the Department of Industry and Investment NSW to continue with the skilled migration program for the region,” RDANI Chair, Kevin Abey explained.
RDANI Project Officer, Kim-Trieste Hastings said the seminars represent important opportunities for the region’s employers with skilled labour needs.
“The purpose of these seminars is primarily to provide the latest information on the skilled migration project directly to employers. It will be a timely opportunity to learn about changes to the 457 Visa, which came into effect on 14 September, 2009,” she said. “The Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Senator Chris Evans, has set new priority processing arrangements that were legislated on 23 September, 2009. These will also be discussed in the upcoming seminars.”
The seminar series will introduce the new Immigration Department’s Regional Outreach Officer for the Regional Migration Initiative, Rhett Henkel. His predecessor, Ian Moore was a regular visitor to the region and Ms Hastings said Mr. Henkel’s visit marks the continuance of a tradition of support, direct from the Immigration Department to Northern Inland NSW.
“It’s important that the region’s employers are provided with face-to-face contact with Immigration Officials. This ensures a level of equity. These visits are critically important to regional areas, so they have access to the same services and support that employers and people living in metropolitan areas have,” Ms Hastings said.
“Many local organisations, both large and small, are experiencing skilled labour shortages. These are generally in trades such as electricians, boiler makers and welders, although there are also shortages in areas such as health and allied professionals,” she said. “If employers cannot fill a position locally, they can then look overseas.”
Employers are urged to attend, receive the latest details on skilled migration visas and network over light refreshments. RSVP’s are required by midday Friday 13 November.
Please call RDANI Project Officer, Kim-Trieste Hastings on: 0427 008 572 or email: khastings@rdani.org.au
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