Monday, 28 November 2016
Disability Awareness Week has been held in Western Australia since 2009, and aligns with the annual international day on December 3. This year, WA is focusing its activities on United Nations Sustainable Goal 8: to promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, and full and productive employment for all.
Disability Services Minister Donna Faragher said the focus of Disability Awareness Week highlighted the work the Liberal National Government had been doing all year to create inclusive, accessible communities.
"The public sector's 'See my abilities' disability employment strategy and the Lighthouse Project - a disability employment collaboration with local governments that has received $800,000 in State Government funding - have been highly successful programs run this year," Mrs Faragher said.
"Both reflect the theme of Disability Awareness Week, which is about raising awareness of the economic and social benefits to the community of people with disability being full participants in the workforce."
Throughout the week, the Disability Services Commission will share on its website and social media channels, the stories of people with disability who work in the public sector. Their stories describe the highlights and challenges of their employment.
"These stories show the great diversity and significant contribution of people with disability in the State Government. I can only hope that seeing the skills and abilities of these individuals can prompt other employers to have a stronger focus on inclusion of people with disability within their own workforce," the Minister said.
The importance of access and inclusion will be highlighted throughout the week at events around the State, promoting the participation of people of all abilities in employment, recreation and community activities.
These include events supported by $500 seed grants from the Commission. Disability Awareness Week banners will hang in Perth's Murray Street Mall.
Sunday, 27 November 2016
Deputy Premier and Training and Workforce Development Minister Liza Harvey said the State Government and nbn would offer 100 telecommunications scholarships over the next three years, encouraging workers to increase their skills.
"The scholarships, worth $1,000, can be used towards a range of associated costs, such as tools, learning resources, mentoring, coaching, accommodation, transport and childcare fees while the State Government and nbn will pay the course fees," the Deputy Premier said.
The scholarships are open to people who meet the relevant selection criteria, are employed with an nbn delivery partner or subcontractor, and enrolled, or looking to enrol, in Certificate II and III in Telecommunications and Certificate II and III in Telecommunications Network, Build and Operate.
"As people move into skilled roles via this scholarship program, more entry level positions will also become available for West Australians looking to enter the industry," Ms Harvey said.
The Deputy Premier said nbn expected about 500 additional opportunities arising within the next two to three years to help install, operate and maintain the broadband network in WA.
Through its delivery partners and subcontractors, nbn offer traineeships, which include Certificate level qualifications and on-the-job training, so trainees earn a wage while gaining skills.
Ms Harvey said the scholarship scheme was based on the successful initiative which aimed to get women training in non-traditional trade areas.
"Our training equips students with the best skills to get a job in the industries driving our economy," she said.
Saturday, 26 November 2016
Transport Minister Bill Marmion said the latest Passenger Satisfaction Monitor, marked the eighth year in a row that more than 90 per cent of survey participants had praised the service.
"Considering the vast distances Transwa passengers travel, this is a resounding acknowledgment that the State Government's commitment to quality transport service in the regions is working," Mr Marmion said.
"The average Transwa road coach and train passenger travels more than 300 kilometres per journey - it's crucial that all elements of their travel experience are positive.
"Issues like cost and timetable convenience, service cleanliness, punctuality and even staff manners have a real impact on that experience."
Road coach passengers are already benefiting from a record $16.3 million investment in 23 new road coaches.
"The 23 new coaches were funded by $15.1 million from Royalties for Regions, with a further $1.2 million generated by the sale of the old coaches," the Minister said.
"I am thrilled that State Government investment in regional public transport services continues to pay dividends for local WA communities, providing options for residents and tourists to see more of our great State."
Saturday, 26 November 2016
An aspiring journalist, Vanessa Vlajkovic helped establish Deafblind West Australians, an organisation providing support, social interaction and advocacy for deafblind individuals.
Presenting the WA Young Person of the Year award at a gala ceremony last night, Youth Minister Paul Miles said what made Vanessa truly inspiring was the fact that she had never let her sensory loss prevent her from getting involved in her community.
"Vanessa was born blind, learnt Braille by the age of four and was mainstream schooled. By 16, her hearing had deteriorated and her only communication method was 'tactile' Auslan - the signs formed on her hands," Mr Miles said.
"Vanessa is proof that nothing should get in the way of achieving goals. Using her skills and experience, she advocates strongly within the deafblind community to help others realise their potential.
"I commend Vanessa for her remarkable achievements and passion for making a positive difference, and I look forward to working with her as an ambassador for WA youth."
The Minister said Vanessa was one of five outstanding individual category winners doing great work to make WA an even better place to live.
"The Liberal National Government is proud to be involved with the WA Youth Awards, which showcase the energy, commitment and talents of our State's young people," Mr Miles said.
"I wish all of the finalists and winners the best of luck, and I hope that they will all build on their success, whatever that may be."
Friday, 25 November 2016
Mines and Petroleum Minister Sean L'Estrange said the skills being showcased in the competition benefited mining sites across the State.
"While we hope these teams are never called on for a real emergency, it is important that they continue to practice and work on the skills required to respond effectively," Mr L'Estrange said.
Teams will battle it out in a series of emergency response scenarios such as confined space rescue, firefighting, hazardous materials handling and first aid.
"While there will be trophies awarded, the Mining Emergency Response Competition is one of those rare events where everyone is a winner because of the invaluable skills that are developed and honed through competition," the Minister said.
This year's competition also incorporates an industry forum hosted by the Department of Mines and Petroleum on the new draft guidance document, 'Emergency preparedness for mining operations'.
"The guidance document helps reinforce the importance of incident management and emergency response to the mining and petroleum industry," Mr L'Estrange said.
"The forum will give emergency response competition participants and other industry representatives, a chance to learn about the draft guidance and provide feedback to the Department of Mines and Petroleum."
Competition participants will attend an awards ceremony and dinner on Sunday evening, when the winners will be announced.
Friday, 25 November 2016
Ms Davies said water utilities, such as the Water Corporation, would do everything they could to maintain scheme water during a bushfire but they must not be relied upon.
"This infrastructure, like anything in or near the path of a bushfire, is not immune to damage," she said.
"If a bushfire damages infrastructure or there is a loss of power, this will result in a total loss of water. This is why, if you choose to stay and defend your home, it is absolutely critical that you have your own water supply and pumping capability."
The Department of Water encourages those with groundwater bores or access to surface water on their property in at-risk bushfire areas, to store water to support their bushfire plans.
"In the case of licensed water users, this water does not count as part of your annual entitlement and is to be used for emergency fire situations only. We recommend a record is kept of the amount of water taken to support your fire plan," the Minister said.
Ms Davies said rural landholders also needed to be aware bores and dams could be called upon by Department of Fire and Emergency Services and the Department of Parks and Wildlife during a bushfire for firefighting needs.
"We encourage landholders to ensure whoever is fighting the fire has access to draw points when needed," she said.
Friday, 25 November 2016
Releasing the State Oral Health Plan 2016-2020 today, Health Minister John Day said it provided the first clear snapshot of the state of oral health in WA.
"Western Australia has the lowest prevalence of tooth decay in Australia, with 36.4 per cent of six-year-old children and 31.9 per cent of 12-year-olds experiencing tooth decay, compared with the national rates of 51 per cent and 45 per cent respectively," Mr Day said.
"But despite these results, the rates of poor oral health are unevenly distributed across the community, with children in the lowest socio-economic areas experiencing 50 to 70 per cent more tooth decay than children in the most advantaged areas.
"This plan provides us with a comprehensive road map, showing how we can better utilise existing resources to overcome these inequities."
The Minister said the plan highlighted a clear strategy to identify and respond to the gaps in oral health services across six foundation areas and four priority populations, including people living in regional and remote communities, Aboriginal groups, and those who were socially disadvantaged or had additional health needs.
The plan also highlights the links between oral health and chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes, and provides strategies for greater collaboration between dentists and other health professionals.
"Chronic conditions are the leading cause of illness, disability and death in Australia and place a significant cost on society," Mr Day said.
"For this reason, a key component of the plan highlights prevention and promotion strategies targeted to at-risk population groups as well as the broader community.
"Oral health problems are the biggest single cause of acute preventable hospital admissions in WA, with more than 9,500 people hospitalised each year."
The plan also identifies enhanced research opportunities to improve access to high-quality qualitative and quantitative data to assist policy makers, healthcare organisations and clinicians in planning service delivery.
Keep Up to Date