Rio Tinto - Lucy Warren

Rio Tinto Alcan Weipa has celebrated the 10-year anniversary of the operation's local Indigenous traineeship programme.

"This programme plays an important role in providing local Aboriginal people with an opportunity to obtain nationally recognised qualifications and work experience in the mining industry, with the potential to secure permanent employment," Rio Tinto Alcan Weipa General Manager Operations, Jo-Anne Scarini said.

"The traineeship program has been an important development both for Rio Tinto Alcan, in assisting us to meet our objective of continually growing our local Aboriginal workforce, and for local Aboriginal people in assisting them to enter the workforce and the mining industry."

Ms Scarini said more than 250 local Aboriginal people have taken part in the programme since it launched a decade ago, with more than 100 transitioning into permanent positions or apprenticeships.

Ms Scarini said the skills the trainees learn during the programme are portable and can open up career pathways outside the mining industry.

"For example, graduates have gone on to work in other fields such as office administration in their local communities or even outside the local area," she said.

With an Indigenous workforce of close to 25 per cent, Rio Tinto Alcan Weipa's traineeship programme recruits local Aboriginal people who have traditional links to the land on which the company operates.

Rio Tinto Alcan Weipa's traineeship programme is conducted in collaboration with the
Traditional Owners of the region through the Western Cape Communities Co-ordinating Committee and the Ely Co-ordination Committee.

"In addition we acknowledge that both the State and Federal government have provided assistance to this program over time."

For further information on employment opportunities, please call Rio Tinto Alcan Weipa's community feedback hotline 1800 707 633.