Boost for Aboriginal participation on Woolgoolga to Ballina Pacific Highway upgrade

9 November 2017

Employment on Australia’s largest regional infrastructure project - the Pacific Highway upgrade - will be the talk of Ballina, Lismore, Casino, Maclean and Grafton this month.

A Roads and Maritime Services spokesperson said an expo-style roadshow will visit the communities to encourage Aboriginal participation in the 155 kilometre Woolgoolga to Ballina project.

“More than $4.4 million has been spent on Aboriginal employment to date, with around 140 Aboriginal people employed on the Woolgoolga to Ballina upgrade,” the spokesperson said.
“This number is expected to significantly increase as work ramps up next year, with all main civil and bridge contracts now awarded on the project.

“The scale and scope of this $4.36 billion upgrade presents a great opportunity to upskill and boost employment opportunities for Aboriginal people and businesses in regional NSW.

“A number of initiatives are in place to ensure the good work continues including implementing contracts with higher Aboriginal participation, direct engagement of Aboriginal companies and implementing regional roadshows such as this one.”

The roadshow will stop in five towns across three days and give Aboriginal people and businesses the ability to speak directly with project staff, contractors, labour hire companies, training organisations and job agencies to discuss employment opportunities on the upgrade.

“The roadshow will help provide clear information on pathways to gain employment on the project, facilitate networking opportunities by linking locals to major employers and connect new or unskilled job seekers with training and education providers,” the spokesperson said.

“On a project as large as the Woolgoolga to Ballina upgrade, there are a wide variety of work opportunities for Aboriginal people including trade specific work, engineering, fencing, truck driving, labouring, machinery operation, traffic control, administration and community engagement.

“Anybody interested in discussing opportunities available on the Woolgoolga to Ballina upgrade is encouraged to attend one of the five information sessions.”

Information sessions will be held on:

  • Monday 20 November 9am - 11am
    The Richmond Room, 5 Regatta Avenue, Ballina
  • Monday 20 November 2pm - 4pm
    The Function Room at Lismore City Hall, 1 Boundary Street, Lismore
  • Tuesday 21 November 12pm - 2pm
    Casino RSM, 162 Canterbury Street, Casino
  • Wednesday 22 November 9am - 11am
    Maclean Bowling Club, 1a McLachlan Street, Maclean
  • Wednesday 22 November 2pm - 4pm
    Clarence River Jockey Club, Powell Street Grafton

For more information on the Woolgoolga to Ballina Pacific Highway upgrade roadshow, call 1800 778 900 or email

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