Release type: Joint Media Release


New pre-employment support for parents


The Hon Tony Burke MP
Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations
Minister for the Arts
Senator the Hon Katy Gallagher
Minister for Finance
Minister for Women
Minister for the Public Service

The Albanese Labor Government will introduce a new voluntary pre-employment service for parents from 1 November 2024, to replace the former government’s ParentsNext program.

This is a reimagined program, that will support parents to achieve their education, employment and career goals, while keeping their family front and centre.

The design of the new program and its offerings is informed by consultation with parents and their real life experiences, and builds on the recommendations of experts, including the Women’s Economic Equality Taskforce.

The service will be available to parents with young children under 6 years who are facing disadvantage and would like to access support to prepare for their future.

This is what single parents – the majority of whom are women – around the country have told the Government they want, and it’s what we’re delivering.

The previous government’s program was punitive, counterproductive and caused harm.

The new service will provide, on a voluntary basis:

  • Pre-employment activities to assist parents who want to enter or re‑enter the labour market.
  • Qualified and experienced mentors to support parents while they are in the service.
  • Improved and more transparent access to financial support to help parents engage in the new service and build their skills and capability.

The new service has been designed based on feedback from parents about the type of support they want, and will be delivered by providers with close connections to local communities.

The Government will continue consulting with parents on what support works best for them, including through a new Parents’ Advisory Group.

The current ParentsNext program will be extended until 31 October 2024, and will continue to be voluntary during that period. This will give certainty to parents taking part in the program.

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