August 10th, 2023

The Hon. Brendan O’Connor presented the keynote address and launch the 2023 National Skills Week at Canberra this morning.

Below is an extract from the start of the speech . The link below is to the full speech.


I begin by acknowledging the traditional owners of the land on which we meet and pay my respects to their elders past, and present.

I am proud to be part of a government that will give every Australian the opportunity to vote for constitutional recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people later this year, the creation of a Voice.

I extend that welcome to Ngunnawal Elder Richard Allan and any other First Nations colleagues here today.

Extract of Minister Brendan O’Connor’s speech to launch 2023 National Skills Week.


We’re here this morning to launch National Skills Week.

A week that celebrates apprentices, trainees, students and the skills sector.

I’m grateful to SkillsOne, particularly Brian Wexham, for organising this event, and for their work showcasing Australia’s skills sector.

To Minister Chris Steel, who has been a pleasure to work with and is a great representative of the ACT.

I also like to acknowledge Professor Peter Dawkins, Liam O’Brien from the ACTU, and CEO of ACCI Andrew McKellar.

Welcome to Old Parliament House.

A very appropriate setting for this breakfast.

It was in this building about 50 years ago, the Whitlam Government sought to significantly widen educational opportunities for all Australians, and reform post school training.

Its focus on increasing participation in education, both at the school and at the tertiary level, represented

Read Full speech




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