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Previous Ministers' releases and speeches - Senator The Hon. Michael Ronaldson

Senator the Hon. Michael Ronaldson
Minister for Veterans' Affairs
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC
Special Minister of State

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Friday, 12 September 2014


Recognising the unique nature of military service, I am pleased to announce a new trial initiative that will help wounded, injured or ill veterans achieve employment opportunities as part of their recovery. 

As a nation, we owe a great debt to the men and women who have served in our Defence Force.  It is incumbent upon us to do everything we can to facilitate the rehabilitation of those who have been injured and to help them transition to post service employment. 

This trial Veterans Employment Assistance Initiative builds on the traditional approach to rehabilitation and brings a greater focus in linking veterans to employment opportunities.

Under the trial Initiative, veterans who have identified that they wish to return to work will undergo early assessment of their vocational rehabilitation needs.  This will include aligning the skills they have developed in the Australian Defence Force (ADF) to potential civilian employment opportunities.  Participants will also undertake employment focused training in line with their abilities and aspirations.

Those who have served in the ADF bring to future employment a unique range of skills and experiences. I am sure that every Australian will join with me in wanting those veterans who need assistance, and their families, to improve their wellbeing, restore their independence, realise their skills and capabilities, and secure meaningful employment.   

Today I presented Downer EDI Works with a certificate of appreciation, in recognition of their employment of a former ADF member. 

I have asked my Department to work closely with employers to match employment opportunities with veterans and ensure the best outcome for all.  The Veterans Employment Assistance Initiative will broaden the vocational and non-vocational assistance and support available to former ADF members.

This initiative will further strengthen our already world-leading repatriation system by assisting those who wish to return to employment following injury.

The Veterans Employment Assistance Initiative is being undertaken as a trial in Queensland involving up to 50 participants and will help inform a future national approach. 

For more information visit

Media inquiries:      Minister Ronaldson: Brad Rowswell 6277 7820 or 0417 917 796
                                Department of Veterans’ Affairs Media: 02 6289 6203


Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS) and Veterans Line can be reached 24 hours a day across Australia for crisis support and free and confidential counselling. Phone 1800 011 046

PDF version (32 KB)