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Carnival encourages a connected community778270Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements0html26/11/2015 7:58:55 AM2015-11-26T07:45:00Z​Sports carnival encourages young people to get sportyCommunicare delivers Active Schools Project to connect youth with their local sporting community Western Australia's culturally diverse community will kick goals today when Islamic and non-Islamic youth come together to play sport at an interschool carnival. Sport and Recreation Minister Mia Davies said almost 200 high school students from the Australian Islamic Colleges in Thornlie and Kewdale and the Cannington Community College will compete in the Communicare Get Active Interschool Carnival 2015. The students will play cricket, AFL, basketball, volleyball and football at Coker Park in Cannington. "Sport and active recreation clubs play a vital role in cultural inclusion and increasing the feeling of connectedness between young people, their families and the local community," Ms Davies said. "Communicare received an $85,000 grant from the State Government to co-ordinate the carnival as part of their Active Schools Project, which targets schools in the south-east metropolitan corridor, initially in the Islamic colleges in Kewdale and Thornlie. "The project is using sport to deliver a range of activities to develop personal wellbeing, healthy living and social skills, and facilitate a greater sense of social inclusion and community belonging for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse youth and their families." Aside from an interschool sports carnival, the project has also helped deliver swimming lessons for 100 students and an after-school sports program, which included AFL and basketball as well as visits to the WA Basketball Centre and a West Coast Eagles training session. The project also includes mentoring opportunities for students to gain coaching and officiating accreditation, and students being supported into Communicare's youth leadership program. Fact FileActive Schools is part of Communicare's Get Active Project, which has been funded with $285,000 over three yearsFor information on the Department of Sport and Recreation's inclusion and community programs, visit http// are donating two pieces of fruit per child to carnival participantsCity of Canning is providing Coker Park for the carnival Minister's office - 6552 5500
New chairman for Forest Products Commission778268Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements0html26/11/2015 6:17:13 AM2015-11-26T06:10:00Z​New chairman Ross Holt appointed to FPC board Forestry Minister Mia Davies has announced the appointment of a new chairman to the Forest Products Commission (FPC) board. Ross Holt, who was a previous chief executive officer of LandCorp, started in the new position last week. "Ross brings strategic leadership and significant commercial and government experience to the commission," Ms Davies said. "Ross has a vast array of experience and skills in public sector management including financial and economic policy and exposure to major land and infrastructure projects. "His awareness of the commercial requirements of both government and private stakeholders will be an asset for the commission." The Minister also expressed her appreciation to outgoing chairman Robert Fisher and commissioner Stuart Morgan who finished in their positions this month. "Robert and Stuart have both been on the FPC board since 2012, and on behalf of the State Government and the forest industry I'd like to recognise and thank them for the valuable contribution they have made," Ms Davies said. Fact FileThe Forest Products Commission is responsible for maintaining an environmentally sustainable and commercially viable forest products industryFor more information, visit http// Minister's office - 6552 5500
Guacamole galore at avocado festival778264Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements0html26/11/2015 5:36:06 AM2015-11-26T05:05:00Z​50 to 80 per cent of locally grown avocados sent interstateFirst avocado festival this weekend celebrates success of industryGoods range from guacamole to ciders to beauty products With Western Australia's avocado industry experiencing significant growth, growers are preparing for the first festival this weekend at Araluen Botanic Park in Roleystone. Agriculture and Food Minister Ken Baston said the avocado industry produced almost 18,575 tonnes in 2012-13, rising to 24,000 tonnes in 2014-15, injecting more than $150 million into the State's economy. "We have significant growing areas in Pickering Brook, Gingin, Carabooda, Busselton, Manjimup and Pemberton, with smaller plantings scattered along the coast from Carnarvon to Albany," Mr Baston said. While the main commercial season runs from August to February, differences in the State's climate mean that avocados can be available all year round. WA predominantly grows the Hass variety (more than 95 per cent of total commercial production), with smaller production of Reed, Fuerte, Sharwil, Lamb Hass, Llanos Hass and Bacon. "Traditionally, our avocado production has alternated year on, year off with one heavy growing season followed by one light season. The industry is working to reduce this variation," the Minister said. While the local market is important, 50 to 80 per cent of production is sold interstate and a modest but growing percentage is exported to destinations including Malaysia, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates. Fact FileAraluen's West Australian Avocado Festival will be held at Araluen Botanic Park, Roleystone from 10am to 5pm on Saturday, November 28 and Sunday, November 29For more information, visit http// consumers buy 3,774 tonnes of avocado, with 5,648 sent to NSW, 4,895 to Victoria, 2,768 to Queensland, 891 to South Australia and the Northern Territory, and 598 sent overseas Minister's office - 6552 5400
Lead adviser sought to work with Keystart778262Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements0html26/11/2015 5:18:35 AM2015-11-26T05:00:00Z​The State Government is seeking a lead financial adviser to work with Keystart as the first step in a process to implement a partial divestment of the loan bookBusiness as usual for Keystart's clients The State Government is seeking a lead financial adviser to work with Keystart in securing private sector investment to further improve the State's highly successful affordable home loan program, Treasurer Mike Nahan and Housing Minister Colin Holt announced today. As part of the 2015-16 State Budget, the Government announced it was investigating options for a partial divestment of Keystart's loan book. "This represents the first step in enabling Keystart to partner with the private sector to continue to meet its affordable housing objectives and reduce its reliance on State Government borrowings," Dr Nahan said. "It is important to note there will be no change for Keystart's clients because it will be business as usual from a service delivery point of view." Once appointed, the lead financial adviser will work with Keystart and the Department of Treasury to develop a solution thatwill reduce record government borrowings to Keystartensures there is no change to service levels or the terms and conditions for existing Keystart customersdoes not impact upon Keystart's existing interest rate setting policy, lending eligibility criteria or rigorous loan assessment process. The lead financial adviser will then assist Keystart in conducting a competitive process to identify a private financing partner. Mr Holt said eventual private investment would allow Keystart to be more flexible in meeting the key targets of the State Government's Affordable Housing Strategy 2010-2020 Opening Doors to Affordable Housing. "Keystart lending has reached record levels under the Liberal National Government, enabling the delivery of the Australian-first affordable housing strategy," he said. "Keystart will continue to play an important part in the strategy, which has achieved more than 20,000 affordable homes for West Australians on low-to-medium incomes since 2010." Fact FileKeystart provides low deposit and shared equity residential home loans to eligible West Australians on low-to-medium incomes who are unable to obtain finance from private lendersThe Request for Tender document can be accessed by calling Keystart's procurement officer on 9338 3126. Visit http// for more information Treasurer's office - 6552 5700 Housing Minister's office- 6552 6100
Fire bugs warned of police blitz778260Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements0html26/11/2015 3:24:37 AM2015-11-26T03:15:00Z​WA Police launch the 2015-16 arson operation VulcanPublic play crucial role in catching and preventing arsonists The State Government has launched an operation to target fire bugs and is calling on members of the public to contribute by being the 'eyes and ears' in high-risk arson areas. Police Minister Liza Harvey said the WA Police-led Operation Vulcan involved arson squad officers proactively working to prevent deliberate bushfires. "Western Australia has the highest incidence of bushfires in the country so the last thing authorities need is people deliberately lighting fires," Mrs Harvey said. "Police would be conducting a lot of work targeting arson but we also want members of the community to be vigilant and immediately report suspicious behaviour." The Minister said Operation Vulcan would fight arsonists by using covert cameras to conduct surveillance on identified bushfire arson hot spotstargeted patrolling of identified hot spotsa community awareness campaigntargeting known arsonists using overt and covert means in collaboration with local policing teams. Emergency Services Minister Joe Francis said it was hard to comprehend that firefighters put their lives on the line to protect the community from deliberately lit fires. "These men and women pledge to protect the community from bushfires that ravage this State and that job is challenging enough without throwing arson into the mix," he said. Mr Francis said parents with children fascinated by fire should consider the Government's extremely successful Juvenile and Family Fire Awareness Program. Strike Force Vulcan, established in 2010, has resulted in numerous arrests and charges as well as identifying hot spots for arson and preventing fires through intelligence, education and rapid response. Fact FileIn the last two bushfire seasons 90% of WA arsonists were boys aged between 9-17WA records about 6,500 bushfires each yearThere are rewards for information which leads to an arson convictionFor more information about the Juvenile and Family Fire Awareness Program, visit http// Police Minister's office - 6552 5900 Emergency Services Minister's office - 6552 6500
Hey there - Georgie is our youth ambassador778257Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements0html26/11/2015 1:22:35 AM2015-11-26T01:05:00Z​Georgie Carey is 2016 WA National Youth Week Ambassador Western Australia's National Youth Week Ambassador has been named as 19-year-old Georgie Carey from Mosman Park. The National Youth Week is Australia's largest annual celebration of young people aged 12-25, with WA events kicking off in Broome next April. As the week's ambassador, Ms Carey will take a seat on WA's National Youth Week planning committee. She will also represent the State's young people during the week's activities. Youth Minister Tony Simpson said Ms Carey, who is studying a Bachelor of Commerce at The University of Western Australia, had a track record representing the views of young people at a national level. "This is an exciting appointment, and Georgie brings a tremendous amount of enthusiasm and experience to the role of WA National Youth Week Ambassador," Mr Simpson said. "As chairperson of the Mosman Park Youth Advisory Council, she has been involved in running National Youth Week events for five years, holding two terms as the group's chairperson. "She also represented WA at the National Youth Conference in Canberra for the National Youth Council of Australia. "Georgie is an outstanding young person, and I wish her the very best of luck in her tenure as National Youth Week Ambassador." More than 100 events are expected to take place in WA during National Youth Week next year, taking place from April 8-17, 2016. Many of these events will receive a National Youth Week grant, funded by the WA Government through the Department of Local Government and Communities and the Australian Government's Department of Education and Training. Fact FileNational Youth Week WA is presented by Propel Youth Arts WA in partnership with the Department of Local Government and CommunitiesFor more information on how to get involved, visit http// Minister's office - 6552 6600
Signed, sealed, soon delivered on Rottnest778256Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements0html26/11/2015 1:11:07 AM2015-11-26T01:00:00Z​State Government seals deal on long-awaited upgrade to Rottnest LodgeAward-winning international travel and lifestyle brand Karma to breathe new life into WA's premier holiday islandQuod to be returned to Rottnest Island Authority custodianship The State Government and Karma Group have concluded final lease negotiations that pave the way for redevelopment within the Lodge precinct on Rottnest Island, with the agreement effective from June 1, 2018. Tourism Minister Kim Hames said he was delighted negotiations had been completed and that plans for the environmentally sensitive leisure and business concept on the island had been cemented. "It has taken a few months to ensure all parties are satisfied with the way forward but it was important to get the detail right and I'm pleased that agreement has been reached in accordance with the approved concept plan," Dr Hames said. "The whole design promises to be an exciting and innovative addition to Rottnest Island. Visitors can now look forward to a resort-style hotel of the same high standard that Karma has become famous for around the world. "The redevelopment of the Lodge precinct has been a while in coming so I think people will appreciate what the revitalisation of the area will bring more choice for leisure and business accommodation, more choice of amenities, and more choice for places to eat and relax." The Minister said the Karma Group development captured new and revamped facilities designed with the island's unique environment in mind and would include 80 contemporary self-contained units, short stay accommodation, cafe, restaurant and beverage venues, kids' club, swimming pool, day spa and conference and meeting rooms. "The Government is committed to ensuring visitors have a wide variety of quality accommodation options on Rottnest Island which cater for a range of budgets," he said. "From camping to glamping to four or five star accommodation and everything in between, the idea is you will have a choice to suit you, and that hasn't really existed on Rottnest before." The modified lease with Karma Group will also see the return of the 'Quod' or Aboriginal prison site to the Rottnest Island Authority in May 2018 as part of a larger project to recognise the island's varied heritage and historic significance. The Quod is located adjacent to the Wadjemup Aboriginal Burial Ground and will become the entry point for the interpretive centre or display. Fact FileKarma Group is also a major sponsor of the annual Rottnest Channel Swim$650,000 State Government funding for completion of Stage one perimeter works on Wadjemup Aboriginal Burial GroundWadjemup Aboriginal Burial Ground is Australia's largest unmarked Aboriginal burial site Minister's office - 6552 5300
Milestone reached with Gnowangerup Hospital778252Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements110html25/11/2015 11:42:56 PM2015-11-25T23:00:00Z The completion of improvement works at Gnowangerup Hospital marks another important milestone for the Southern Inland Health Initiative (SIHI), a $500 million transformation project investing in country health across much of Western Australia's southern inland region, made possible by the State Government's Royalties for Regions program. Health Minister Kim Hames said the refurbishment of the Gnowangerup Hospital would provide enhanced health facilities including a new emergency treatment room, upgraded ambulance bay, a new nurse call system to enhance patient comfort and communication, and a new multipurpose consultation room. "The Small Hospital and Nursing Post Refurbishment Program is all about improving primary health care services and ambulatory care, catering for projected future demand and reducing the need for patient transfers to Perth," Dr Hames said. Regional Development Minister Terry Redman said SIHI aimed to enhance service provision and improve health outcomes for Wheatbelt and Great Southern communities. "Residents in the Gnowangerup area now have access to a greater range of co-ordinated health services targeted to meet their local health care demands," Mr Redman said. "The Royalties for Regions investment in health infrastructure and services is critical in supporting the development of a strong and sustainable regional Western Australia." The SIHI capital works program is more extensive and complex than any project previously undertaken by the WA Country Health Service, with new builds and upgrades to 37 hospitals and health services in the Great Southern, Wheatbelt, South-West and Mid-West. Katanning, Gnowangerup and Kojonup hospitals as well as the Tambellup Health Clinic are all part of the SIHI capital upgrade program in the Great Southern. Upgrades to Wagin and Lake Grace hospitals are expected to be completed by December. To find out more, go to http// Health Minister's office - 6552 5300 Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6700
Albany sporting complex upgrade to continue778250Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements450html25/11/2015 11:31:02 PM2015-11-25T22:00:00ZState Government commits a further $3 million to redevelopment of Albany sporting complex Liberal National Government contribution now stands at $11 million The State Government will provide a further $3 million, part of a 2013 election commitment, for the continued redevelopment of Albany's recreational playing fields. The Liberal National Government has previously contributed $8 million to the first stage of the redevelopment of Centennial Park, which was a 2008 election commitment. The first stage delivered an extension of the Albany Leisure and Aquatic Centre, the construction of new playing fields and upgrade of clubrooms and floodlights. Centennial Park comprises grounds for soccer, cricket, hockey and rugby and is a central focus for the Albany sporting community. Premier Colin Barnett said that once completed, the $29 million redevelopment would provide the region with a high-quality sporting and events facility which it has previously been lacking. "This will be a precinct which can be used by the whole community in Albany and surrounds and the transformation of the existing facilities will meet the needs of a wide range of sporting groups," the Premier said. Sport and Recreation Minister Mia Davies said the City of Albany was successful in receiving $8.25 million through the Federal Government's Regional Development Australia Fund in 2013-14 for the Centennial Park redevelopment. "This, in conjunction with the State Government's contribution, will fund the next stage of works including the development of a major sporting oval for the city, club rooms, secondary oval and supporting infrastructure," Ms Davies said. "There will also be an upgrade to the western precinct club rooms. "Community sporting facilities are places for people to improve their health and fitness while building connections. Active communities are more engaged communities and that in turn creates more livable regions which are stronger, healthier, happier and safer." The City of Albany has committed $4 million to the project. Fact FileIn 2008, the Liberal National Government allocated $8 million to a number of components of the Centennial Park redevelopmentThe upgrades, including a three-court extension to the Albany Leisure and Aquatic Centre, development of a new playing field in the central precinct and upgrade of Railways Oval have been completed Premier's office - 6552 5000 Sport and Recreation Minister's office - 6552 5500
Proposed Utah Point sale takes step forward778235Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements6890html25/11/2015 5:07:14 AM2015-11-25T05:00:00Z​The due diligence process for the proposed divestment of Utah Point is nearing completion, with the sale process expected to occur during the first half of 2016 The State Government is on track with its commitment to sell Utah Point, with the introduction of enabling legislation to State Parliament today. Treasurer Mike Nahan said the Pilbara Port Assets (Disposal) Bill 2015 would provide the legal framework for the State Government's plans to transition the Utah Point facility to the private sector through a long-term lease. Dr Nahan said the legislation was a key milestone in the State's asset sales program. "The sale of this asset will provide unique investment and innovation opportunities through private sector ownership, while also helping to reduce State debt," the Treasurer said. "The impact of the recent subdued conditions in the iron ore industry will be assessed as part of the detailed due diligence process, but the State Government remains confident that bidders will view the facility as an attractive long-term investment proposition. If the proposed sale is identified as being in the best interests of taxpayers, the process for the divestment of the Utah Point facility is expected to occur during the first half of 2016." In addition to the upfront benefit of the divestment proceeds, the Government will continue to benefit from Utah Point via royalty payments on the commodities exported through the facility. Further, the Bill provides the ability for Government to make regulations relating to both the access to, and pricing of, services provided by Utah Point. Over the past 11 months, the Department of Treasury, supported by its lead financial adviser Rothschild/Deloitte, has progressed the detailed due diligence process for the divestment of Utah Point. This process is being run in close consultation with the departments of Transport and State Development; the Pilbara Ports Authority; and the State Solicitor's Office. The State Government will consider all aspects of the divestment before a decision is made to seek expressions of interest for the lease of the asset, which is expected in the first half of 2016. Fact FileUtah Point is located in the world's largest iron ore export port and is a multi-user berth currently owned by the Pilbara Ports AuthorityConstructed in 2010, the facility comprises a berth that is 272 metres in length and has a harbour depth of 14.5 metres; a shiploader with a peak load rate of 7,500 tonnes per hour; two stockyard product storage facilities; reclaiming and conveying equipment; and other supporting infrastructureFor more information, visit http// updates will be also be available at http// Treasurer's office - 6552 5700
Strengthened terrorism laws pass Parliament778232Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements3150html25/11/2015 4:51:19 AM2015-11-25T04:45:00Z​Terrorism (Extraordinary Powers) Amendment Bill 2015 passes both houses of State ParliamentTerrorism (Extraordinary Powers) Act 2005 to be extended to 2025Powers to search vehicles, including vessels and aircraft, under a covert search warrantAdd membership of a terrorist organisation and suspicion of advocating terrorism as grounds for a covert search warrant The State Government's anti-terrorism legislation which extends and strengthens powers for police to target terrorist activity in Western Australia has passed both houses of Parliament. Police Minister Liza Harvey said the Terrorism (Extraordinary Powers) Act 2005 was due to expire at the end of the year and the new legislation will extend that to 2025. "The Bill will not only extend the current police powers for another decade, but also strengthen police ability to target terrorist activity," Mrs Harvey said. The Minister said the changes would allow the Commissioner of Police to rapidly access necessary powers to respond in the event of a terrorism incident. "As we have seen recently, Australia is not immune to home-grown terrorists and it is important our authorities can act quickly and effectively should we ever be targeted in WA," she said. Mrs Harvey said membership of a terrorist organisation and suspicion of advocating terrorism, would also be included in the Act as grounds to apply for a covert search warrant. The changes to the Act meant police could also apply for covert search warrants on vehicles including cars, boats and planes. Currently covert warrants only applied to a specific property or location. "This legislation will ensure WA Police is equipped with the most effective powers to prepare and respond to the growing threat of terrorism activity in Australia," the Minister said. Mrs Harvey said the Liberal National Government was committed to making communities safer through tough laws and providing police with the resources they needed to combat crime and anti-social behaviour. Fact FileTerrorism (Extraordinary Powers) Act was enacted in 2005 in response to the September 11 terrorist attack in New York and the subsequent Bali bombings in 2002 Minister's office - 6552 5900
Sun shines over star-gazing station778231Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements6260html25/11/2015 4:37:25 AM2015-11-25T04:30:00ZThe State Government has approved a power supply agreement between Horizon Power and CSIRO for the Murchison Radio-astronomy ObservatorySituated 315 kilometres north-east of Geraldton Site works will soon start on the construction of a diesel-solar hybrid power station that will support the world-leading telescopes at the Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory (MRO). Premier and Science Minister Colin Barnett and Energy Minister Mike Nahan today announced that the State Government had approved regional energy provider Horizon Power to execute a power supply agreement with the CSIRO for the supply of electricity to the observatory. "This agreement helps deliver the Government's broader commitment for the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP) and Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) radio telescopes, which are precursors to the international Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project," Mr Barnett said. "The eyes of the world are on Western Australia as the observatory is already producing outstanding scientific results in advance of the SKA." Dr Nahan said Horizon Power would start site works in January on a two megawatt solar-diesel hybrid station at the observatory, about 315 kilometres north-east of Geraldton, which will provide power for the world-class scientific radioastronomy research facility. "The project draws on Horizon Power's experience to deliver remote renewable hybrid power solutions and develops a capability that can be leveraged to other projects," he said. Regional Development Minister Terry Redman said the new power station was supported by a $10 million investment from Royalties for Regions and the partnership with the cutting-edge scientific project would boost the region's profile. "Royalties for Regions is about strengthening and growing our regions and helping regional communities realise their economic potential through the delivery of projects such as this," Mr Redman said. A further $5.5 million has been invested by the State Government from consolidated revenue. Fact FileA Science Statement for Western Australia, launched by the Premier in April 2015, identifies radio astronomy as a science priority for the StateThe MRO is home to the world-leading ASKAP and the MWA radio telescopesThe MRO will be the Australian site for the international SKA project. Australia will host the SKA1-Low telescope, the planned low-frequency component of the SKAConstruction of the power station starts in January 2016, with start-up planned for July 2016 Premier and Science Minister's office - 6552 5000 Energy Minister's office - 6552 5700 Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6700
New biodiversity laws introduced to Parliament778228Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements12100html26/11/2015 8:55:10 AM2015-11-25T03:30:00Z​Biodiversity Conservation Bill to replace 65-year-old Wildlife Conservation ActFulfils 2013 election commitment to introduce new legislation Australia's oldest conservation legislation will soon be replaced with the introduction of a modern, updated Bill to State Parliament to conserve Western Australia's environment. Premier Colin Barnett said introducing the Biodiversity Conservation Bill 2015 was a momentous step forward in the conservation of the State's biodiversity. "This long-awaited new legislation will replace the outdated Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 and significantly improve the Government's ability to protect native species and important biodiversity assets," Mr Barnett said. "Successive governments have been trying to update these laws for many years so this is a very significant achievement with new biodiversity conservation laws being introduced for the first time since the 1950s. "Western Australia's south-west is one of 35 globally recognised biodiversity hotspots with flora and fauna found nowhere else. This legislation ensures these values are appropriately recognised." Environment Minister Albert Jacob said the new Act would give protection to whole ecosystems for the first time. "In another first for WA legal history, the Bill will allow for the listing of threatened and critical habitat. The Bill also gives special protection to whales, dugongs and dolphins," Mr Jacob said. Important changes include the increase of maximum penalties for killing or smuggling critically endangered species from $10,000 to $500,000, and from $4,000 to $50,000 for non-threatened species, providing a real deterrent to those considering serious wildlife crimes. The Bill will also replace the inadequate Sandalwood Act 1929. The $200 maximum penalty for illegally harvesting wild sandalwood will rise to $200,000 for individuals and $1 million for corporations, as well as improving trading and processing accountability. The Minister said the Bill provided streamlined development approvals by recognising other State approval mechanisms, and provided a pathway to exemptions from approvals under Commonwealth legislation. "By removing unnecessary regulatory duplication in areas around potential development impacts on threatened species, projects will be able to commence more quickly and with greater certainty than is currently the case," Mr Jacob said. Fact FileThe Bill can be viewed at http// Environment Minister's office - 6552 5800
Perth men stand up against domestic violence778227Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements3130html25/11/2015 3:01:45 AM2015-11-25T03:00:00Z​Australia's national campaign to stop violence towards womenProminent Perth community members 'STAND UP' on White Ribbon Day More than 20 of Perth's prominent men will gather at nib Stadium today to pledge their support in the campaign to stop violence against women. Launching the event today, Child Protection Minister Helen Morton said the Perth 'STAND UP' event was being held to support the world's largest male-led movement to stop violence against females, White Ribbon Day. "The White Ribbon campaign encourages men to lead the way in speaking out and effectively challenging the attitudes and behaviours of men, young adults and boys who use or condone violence against women," Mrs Morton said. "I applaud all the men, such as radio host Peter Bell and artist Stormie Mills, who are here today to take a stand as mentors and speak out against violence towards women. "It is important to recognise that we can all play a role in eliminating this behaviour and that as a community we will not accept violence in any form. "The more awareness the community has about the realities of family and domestic violence, the more we will be able to protect those who are vulnerable." The event coincides with the launch of new and updated resources available to support and educate young people on family and domestic violence as part of the Youth Say No! campaign. Fact FileWomen's Domestic Violence Helpline 1800 007 339Men's Domestic Violence Helpline 1800 000 599White Ribbon Day observes the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and marks the beginning of the 16 days of activism against gender violenceFor more information, visit the Department for Child Protection and Family Support's website at http// or http// Minister's office - 6552 6900
Purrfect: new Perth cat management facility778225Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements6880html25/11/2015 2:04:51 AM2015-11-25T02:00:00Z​State-of-the-art cat management facility for Perth's northern suburbs A new $420,000 State Government-funded cat management facility has opened in Perth's northern suburbs. Local Government Minister Tony Simpson said the leading-edge Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals' cattery in Malaga would house up to 2,000 cats a year. "The establishment of this cattery in the northern suburbs of Perth is an important development for the welfare of unwanted cats in the area," Mr Simpson said. "It will also reduce the negative effects that stray cats are known to have on native wildlife. "The facility will enable local governments to provide impounded cats with treatment such as de-sexing, microchipping and vaccinations, reducing the number of animals that have to be put down. "This is a fantastic facility and I encourage local governments in the northern metropolitan area to take advantage of it." The cattery was made possible by the State Government's Cat Act Implementation grants program, with funding for the building provided in the 2012-13 financial year. In 2012, $3.24 million was made available over two years to support the local government sector and relevant organisations to administer and enforce the Cat Act 2011. A second round of funding in 2013-14 made $345,000 available for cat sterilisation programs to assist pensioners and low-income earners. Fact FileThe Cat Act 2011 took full effect in November 2013 and requires all cats aged six months and over to be microchipped, sterilised and registered with the relevant local governmentCats are also required to wear a collar and registration tag to ensure that owned cats can be easily identified and returned to their ownerFor more information, visit http// Minister's office - 6552 6600
Eastern suburbs to have own health service778222Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements22730html24/11/2015 11:41:41 PM2015-11-24T23:00:00ZNew health service to meet needs of growing population in eastern corridorPart of major reforms to the governance of WA Health Five highly respected interim chairs appointed to Health Service Boards Recognising the continued growth and development taking place in Perth's eastern suburbs, the State Government today announced the restructure of health services from July 1, 2016. Health Minister Kim Hames said the East Metropolitan Health Service was being established in response to burgeoning population and demand for health services in high-growth areas such as Ellenbrook, Forrestfield and Canning Vale. "The new service will oversee the newly opened St John of God Midland Public Hospital, and Royal Perth, Bentley, Kalamunda and Armadale hospitals," Dr Hames said. "With Royal Perth Hospital part of the East Metropolitan Health Service, Perth's eastern suburbs will have a service which covers every health need resulting in better managed co-ordination and integration of clinical services, ensuring more efficient service delivery and budgeting between the hospitals. "The advantage for clinical staff and patients is a co-ordinated approach to the delivery of health services, thanks to a focus on a smaller number of hospitals and better quality of service." Funding for the new health service will be through the Department of Health's existing budget. The announcement comes as part of broader reforms to the governance of the WA Health system which also sees the appointment of five interim chairs to head up Health Service Boards for each of WA Health's service divisions. "The appointment of the interim chairs is a significant step towards modernising the governance structure by clarifying roles, decision-making responsibilities and accountabilities system-wide for more efficient service delivery," the Minister said. The transition from interim to statutory boards of governance in mid-2016 is subject to State Government endorsement and the progress of new legislation. Under the new legislation the boards will oversee the health services and public hospitals within a networked area, rather than individual public hospitals as existed in the past. Dr Hames said the introduction of statutory Health Service Boards was one of the key recommendations of the WA Health Transition and Reconfiguration Steering Committee, chaired by former acting director general of health, Professor Bryant Stokes. The interim Health Service Board chairs and their health service will be Professor Bryant Stokes AM (North Metropolitan Health Service), a highly distinguished neurosurgeon with three professorships at WA universities and a former acting director general of WA HealthRobert McDonald (South Metropolitan Health Service), who has held senior leadership roles with WA Police, the Department of Treasury and the State Supply Commission and is a former chair of the North Metropolitan Health Service Governing CouncilDeborah Karasinski (Child and Adolescent Health Service), the chief executive officer of disability service provider Senses Australia, former chief executive officer of the Multiple Sclerosis Society of WA, and an experienced board memberDr Neale Fong (WA Country Health Service), the president of the Australasian College of Health Service Management and a former director general of WA HealthIan Smith PSM (East Metropolitan Health Service), who has held senior roles in WA Health including chief executive of WA Country Health Service and South Metropolitan Health Service, and more recently chief executive of commissioning at Perth Children's Hospital. The legislation to be introduced early next year will replace the Hospital and Health Services Act 1927. Fact FileInterim Health Service Boards will act in an advisory capacity to June 30, 2016 in the lead-up to health services being established as separate statutory authoritiesInterim members of Health Service Boards to be appointed early in 2016Other health services are North Metropolitan Health Service, South Metropolitan Health Service, Child and Adolescent Health Service, and WA Country Health ServiceThe appointment of interim board chairs follows an open, skills-based recruitment processFor more information, visit http// Minister's office - 6552 5300
Panel enlisted to build new social housing778221Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements4870html24/11/2015 11:32:05 PM2015-11-24T22:00:00ZPanel of builders to deliver up to 1,200 homes for WA's most vulnerable families and seniorsPart of the Liberal National Government's Social Housing Investment Package, announced in 2015-16 State Budget The State Government has established a panel of builders to undertake design and construction work in the Perth metropolitan area for the $560 million Social Housing Investment Package (SHIP). Housing Minister Colin Holt said using a panel of builders to deliver dwellings under SHIP - and other future construction programs - would reduce cost and time for both the State Government and industry in lodging and assessing tenders. "This panel of builders will be delivering anything up to 1,200 dwellings in the Perth metropolitan area over the next two years," the Minister said. "The panel arrangement will streamline pre-construction and building works and enable more houses to be built in less time. It will also ensure a consistent quality in design and construction, and most importantly, value for money." The Housing Authority will award design and construction packages of work to the panel members as they became available. The social housing investment package was announced in May 2015 and will halve the number of seniors and families with children on the priority waitlist by June 30, 2017, and deliver 1,000 extra homes. "We are housing the most vulnerable and most in need in our community," Mr Holt said. "SHIP is an important part of the Liberal National Government's affordable housing strategy and will help ensure that the right home is provided to the right person in the right location. "The builders on the panel will be required to provide design and construction services on single houses and grouped (two to 10-unit) dwellings in the Perth metropolitan area. Dwellings are required to be completed to 'ready to move in' standard and will include all fixtures, fittings, finishes and landscaping." Timeframes for design and construction are expected to be 12 months for single dwellings, and 16 to 20 months for grouped dwellings. Fact FileThe panel will operate for a period of two years with two one-year extension options able to be exercised at the discretion of the Housing AuthoritySHIP projects in regional areas are being publically tendered on a case by case basis and the State Government's Buy Local Policy will be applied to ensure tenders are assessed to provide maximum benefit to regional businesses Minister's office - 6552 6100
New model for financial counselling in Perth778210Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements8120html24/11/2015 6:03:15 AM2015-11-24T05:40:00ZCommunity partnership model will ensure flexible services for metro area$2 million for metropolitan financial counselling services Financial counselling services in metropolitan Perth will operate under a new community partnership model, establishing a range of support for people experiencing financial hardship. Community Services Minister Tony Simpson said a State Government investment of $2 million per year would enable people in the metropolitan area experiencing hardship to access financial counselling services. A community sector partnership will be led by Anglicare WA and UnitingCare West, and will consist of 10 service delivery organisations. They are UnitingCare West, Midlas, Blue Sky Community Group, The Spiers Centre, City of Wanneroo, Anglicare WA, Gosnells Community Legal Centre, Southcare, Mission Australia and the City of Cockburn. "It will enable small, medium and large not-for-profit organisations to work together under a common set of principles to provide face-to-face and telephone services to individuals and families," Mr Simpson said. "I commend the community sector for its positive approach to developing this new model. The State Government looks forward to working with the successful service providers and the financial counselling sector to support people experiencing financial hardship. "This new service model will ensure flexibility and coverage of financial counselling across the Perth metropolitan area." The changes follow a State Government tender process, which concluded last month. Fact FileFunding for the new financial counselling services model for the metropolitan area is to June 30, 2018In September this year, the State Government approved the transfer of financial counselling from the Department for Child Protection and Family Support to the Department of Local Government and CommunitiesFor more information, visit https// The Department of Local Government and Communities will continue to work with organisations not successful in the tender process to provide support as needed Minister's office - 6552 6600
Midland hospital patients transfer a success778208Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements4980html24/11/2015 5:51:43 AM2015-11-24T05:30:00ZMore than 80 patients transferred to St John of God Midland Public Hospital todayOne of WA's largest patient transfers over a single daySwan District Hospital now permanently closed Health Minister Kim Hames has congratulated the teams involved in the successful transfer of 83 inpatients from Swan District Hospital and Swan Mental Health to the new 307-bed St John of God Midland Public Hospital which opened at 7am this morning. "This move represents one of Western Australia's largest ever transfer of patients on the same day. That's a massive feat of logistics and multi-agency co-ordination, involving St John Ambulance, Main Roads, WA Police, the WA Health Department and of course, St John of God Health Care," Dr Hames said. "Co-ordinating a smooth and safe transition of patients is always a challenge and it's a credit to all those involved in today's landmark move that the whole transfer has been conducted so successfully, with minimal disruption." The Minister said in addition to the hard work of teams on the ground, the completion of roadworks around the site had been a vital component of the traffic management and ambulance flow for the facility. "Having the Lloyd Street underpass ready in such a short time is a terrific achievement and speaks of the quality of partnerships involved in this whole project," he said. "Watching the redevelopment of the precinct, to have this new public hospital front and centre of that revitalisation and now taking patients is something I'm very proud to have played a role in." Dr Hames said 84-year-old Marjery Short was the first patient to be transferred the four kilometres from the Swan District site by ambulance to the new Midland public hospital. The new facility opposite the historic Midland Railway Workshops has 307 public beds, is 50 per cent larger than the Swan District Hospital which it replaces, and includes 80 per cent single rooms. It will employ about 1,500 staff and is anticipated to care for 60,000 emergency presentations, 102,000 outpatients and 29,000 inpatients in its first full year. The $360.2 million secondary St John of God Midland Public Hospital was delivered on time and on budget under a public private partnership with St John of God Health Care. Fact FileFirst patient arrived 8amSwan District Hospital now permanently closed$360.2 million St John of God Midland Public Hospital was jointly funded by the State and Federal governments, and is operated under contract to St John of God Health CareFor more on the range of services available, visit http// Minister's office - 6552 5300
Grant keeps UnitingCare West connected778204Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements3490html24/11/2015 4:39:57 AM2015-11-24T04:30:00Z$225,000 Lotterywest grant to provide modern information and communications systems A community services agency that touches the lives of more than 30,000 families and individuals each year will be able to integrate its communications systems to perform more efficiently, thanks to a Lotterywest grant. Community Services Minister Tony Simpson said the Lotterywest grant of $225,000 would go towards an integrated communication system across UnitingCare West's 30-plus programs at 17 locations across the State, which provide support to more than 5,000 people annually. "Currently, services operate separate and diverse telephone systems with resulting business and organisational inefficiencies," Mr Simpson said. "The contribution being made to UnitingCare West's new business systems will help improve the efficiency and timeliness of the many services the organisation offers the community." The Minister said the funding was important to enable the organisation to have a modern information and communications system, in order to operate efficiently and be agile in their response to community need. "The logistics of co-ordinating such a wide range of programs across multiple locations, as UnitingCare West does, is phenomenal and this Lotterywest grant will help the organisation spend more time doing what they do best - supporting the community," he said. Mr Simpson said UnitingCare West was widely known and highly respected not only as one of the largest providers of community services in Western Australia, but also as a leader in social policy reform. Fact FileUnitingCare West was established in 2006 to provide a range of social support services with a focus on highly disadvantaged people, particularly those experiencing poverty, homelessness and mental health issuesWA is the only State where money raised from lottery products is distributed directly back to the community to support not-for-profit organisationsLast financial year, Lotterywest raised $283 million to support the WA communityFor more about Lotterywest grants, visit http// Minister's office - 6552 6600