Willing apprentices hard to find

ROCKHAMPTON tradesman Gavin Wiseman thinks finding a good brickies’ labourer is like finding a good wife.

The bricklayer, who freelances and also works for Yeppoon Concrete Pumping, yesterday criticised bricklaying apprentices of today saying young kids were “too thin-skinned” and weren’t willing to stick out their training.

“They’re not willing to rough it and tough it and they can’t be told to do something. Some stick it out, but most give up after a day in the job,” Mr Wiseman said.

Mr Wiseman reacted to The Morning Bulletin’s front page story yesterday which revealed a skills shortage in the trades industry in Central Queensland and right across the state.

Housing Industry Australia chief economist Harley Dale told The Morning Bulletin that there was a major shortage in the critical trades of bricklaying, carpentry, ceramic tiling and plumbing to keep up with industry demand over the next six months.

Mr Dale said the industry would need about 300 tradespeople to keep up with building demand up until June.

“There is a shortage of skilled tradespeople to make up for those retiring at the other end,” Mr Dale said.

Although Mr Dale said there was the demand for the work to get done to keep up with the growing population, Mr Wiseman said at the moment there wasn’t enough work to keep tradesmen going in the Rockhampton district.

“A lot of them don’t have the patience, time and whinge about not being paid enough to stick out the apprenticeship,” Mr Wiseman said.



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