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Keith Pitt MP supports NEW iMAGE Laundry

People with a disability or mental illness will be big winners from a re-elected Coalition Government which will invest $900,000 for the construction of a commercial laundry to create real jobs and support a host of local businesses. Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt made the announcement today and said the IMPACT Community Services project would boost jobs in Bundaberg as well as provide new services to avoid laundry having to be sent out of town.

“This is another example of how the Coalition Government is creating local jobs and a stronger regional economy right here in Hinkler,” he said. “This project has the potential to create approximately 25 full time positions over the next five years, as well as offer work experience for young job seekers.”

Mr Pitt said IMPACT Community Services would manage the project which would see a state-of-the-art, purpose-built commercial facility constructed. Over the last 38 years IMPACT has successfully developed, managed and implemented a significant number of community projects.

IMPACT Chief Executive Tanya O’Shea said by providing jobs to local people with a disability or mental illness, we are increasing their capacity to be further involved and engaged in the community, especially through economic independence.

“This project will connect new employees with the appropriate services to assist them adjust to working life and to develop the skills to maintain and develop employment pathways, increasing community and economic participation,” she said.

Mrs O’Shea said NEW iMAGE Laundry (NIL), which was purchased by IMPACT in 2013 to provide sustainable employment for disadvantaged people, had outgrown its current premises. “NIL creates a supportive environment for workers to increase the likelihood they remain employed or transition into other employment,” she said.

A new commercial laundry would mean NIL could increase its client base and provide a service to local businesses. “A recent search of accommodation, cafes and restaurants in Bundaberg identified 165 local businesses in these industries as possible new clients,” Mrs O’Shea said. “Additionally, NIL will be able to approach local businesses that we couldn’t previously provide services to, due to machinery and space restrictions.”

The new laundry will also be able to offer a range of work experience options to local schools and help young people to explore opportunities in management, chemical usage, hygiene and cleaning processes and logistics.