Auto worker gets a lift at Bell

Published: 10 July 2017

R A Bell & Company received a Victorian Government Local Industry Fund for Transition grant to create 51 new jobs, including 39 opportunities for ex-auto workers.

Among their latest recruits is Peter Langdon – a former Ford worker with almost 40 years' experience. He has traded the production line for a job building some of our most recognised emergency vehicles.

R A Bell & Company fits out vehicles for organisations including the Country Fire Authority, State Emergency Service, Victoria Police and Metropolitan Fire Brigade. It's also constructing a new manufacturing facility and investing in equipment to boost productivity.

The company is a leader in the design and manufacture of large drain cleaning, hydro-excavation vehicles and engineering services used in the water industry.

Grants of up to $2 million are available to businesses to create new jobs and expand their operations.

Watch the video below to hear from Peter and others about working for RA Bell:

Video Transcript

Automotive Workers get New Start at Bell Environmental

[Vision:  RA Bell factory]

Wade Noonan - Minister for Industry and Employment

Look, I'm really excited to be at RA Bell here in Sunshine.

[Vision:  Fire engines in factory]

Great manufacturer, designer of these emergency service vehicles, and other equipment.

[Vision:  Bell pump signage - staff working]

They've been in business since 1964 but the really exciting thing is that they're expanding, and they're taking on more workers.

[Vision:  SES Emergency Service vehicle - Wade Noonan speaking with staff]

And they're doing that with the support of the Victorian Government's LIFT Program, which is all about assisting those communities most heavily hit by the automotive transition, and of course providing grants to help grow their businesses.

[Vision:  Staff talking to Wade Noonan and showing him equipment - SES Rescue - Wade Noonan speaking with Peter Langdon - Wade Noonan speaking]

It's really terrific to meet ex-auto workers, whether they've been working for Ford, Toyota or Holden, or working for a supply chain business, find a way to carry their skills into new work environments.

[Vision:  Peter talking with Wade Noonan - Wade Noonan speaking]

So that's exactly what we see today with Peter.  He's secured a job here.  He's really pleased.  And he tells a story about a very long history in the automotive industry where, you know, searching for jobs on the internet it was just not something that he'd ever experienced.

[Vision:  Forklift in factory]

Peter Langdon - Assembly Worker - R A Bell

Forty years, you know, I've never had a resume.  I've never used the internet and stuff like that.

[Vision:  Peter Langdon walking past fire engines in factory]

And of course after working your whole life, finding yourself unemployed, it's a bit of an eye-opener.

[Vision:  Peter Langdon working at bench]

I knew there were jobs out there, but I thought my age would be a bit of an anchor.  But the agency that I was with they really helped me out.  Told me I got the job and I was wrapped.  I was really wrapped.  It's just like, you know, measuring and working with tools and stuff like that.

[Vision:  Peter Langdon speaking]

There is jobs out there.  I'm talking to friends but they've been off a little bit longer than me, and they have found jobs.

[Vision:  Staff working in factory - equipment - tools]

There is a hope for everyone.  Don't give up.

[Vision:  Wade Noonan speaking]

Manufacturing is absolutely alive and well in Victoria.

[Vision:  Staff working in factory]

In fact manufacturing last year grew faster than any other sector.  We added about 40,000 additional workers.

[Vision:  Bell fire & rescue sign - staff talking with Wade Noonan - staff working]

What we're seeing with businesses such as RA Bell is growth, and that's particularly exciting because that creates new high value jobs.

[Victoria State Government]

[Speaker:  Authorised by Victorian Government, 1 Treasury Place, Melbourne]