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Albany Sharks club president wins prestigious volunteer award11940Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/05/2022 8:32:08 AM2022-05-17T08:30:00Z Sports volunteers recognised for outstanding contribution to Great Southern region Award honours the late Mike Stidwell and his long-term contributions to sport and recreationThe Great Southern region has kicked off National Volunteer Week by celebrating two of its finest volunteers for their outstanding commitment to the sporting community. Albany Sharks Football and Sporting Club President Tracy Blaszkow was awarded the prestigious Mike Stidwell Medal, while local Denmark volunteer Belinda Ross won the Great Southern Service to Sport Award. Tracy has been involved with the Albany Sharks since 2015 as secretary, treasurer and now club president, and is incredibly well-respected by her industry peers. She is a strong advocate for pioneering change within her club and championing members' wellbeing. During her short reign as president, she has transformed the relatively new club, helping establish a positive and inclusive culture for all. Tracy is the 23rd recipient of the Mike Stidwell Medal, which honours the memory of the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries' former Regional Manager, and his selfless and long-term contribution to sport and recreation in the region. Belinda is only the second recipient to receive the Department's Great Southern Service to Sport Award, which recognises the significant and invaluable contribution by a volunteer to a local sport or recreation club or organisation. Belinda's passion for sport and recreation in her local community is evident in her tireless work across multiple sports in Denmark. She founded the local athletics and running clubs, and volunteers with the junior football, junior basketball and cricket clubs. National Volunteer Week runs from Monday May 16 to Sunday May 22, 2022, under the theme 'Better Together'. Comments attributed to Sport and Recreation Minister David Templeman "Volunteers are the backbone of the sporting community and deserve to be celebrated every day, not just during National Volunteer Week. "Without volunteers like Tracy and Belinda in the community, local sport and recreation clubs simply wouldn't be able to operate or achieve at the levels they do. "Tracy and Belinda are both leaders in their field and I congratulate them on their well-deserved wins." Comments attributed to Albany MLA Rebecca Stephens "Albany is a proud sporting city and I congratulate Tracy Blaszkow on winning this award. "Tracy has dedicated years of service to the Albany Sharks Football and Sporting Club across many roles and her hard work has had an incredible impact. "Volunteers such as Tracy play such a key role in the smooth running of all our Albany sporting and community clubs, and I applaud Tracy for working so hard to give her time to a club which is inclusive and thriving under her leadership." Minister's office - 6552 5400
Dates confirmed for popular Ord Valley Muster next May11939Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/05/2022 7:02:08 AM2022-05-17T07:00:00Z Dates locked in for 2023 Ord Valley Muster, with the event set to return to the Kimberley from May 19 to 27 Live music, comedy, tours, Aboriginal culture and dining experiences to highlight the region's exceptional talent, local characters and flavour Supported by the McGowan Government through Tourism WA's Regional Events Program The Boab Metals Ord Valley Muster will return to WA's spectacular East Kimberley next year from May 19 to 27 with a diverse calendar of events and experiences to showcase the best of Kununurra and the wider region. Offering 30 plus events across the nine days, including rodeo, dining under the stars, music and comedy, all with a distinct local flavour, the multi-award-winning Boab Metals Ord Valley Muster is the region's prime event in the national festival calendar. Next year's Muster will mark 22 years since the popular cultural festival was born and is supported by the McGowan Government through Tourism WA's Regional Events Program, funded by Royalties for Regions. In 2021, the Muster injected over $5.3 million into the area and recorded its highest-ever ticket sales, with most events selling out for the first time since the festival began back in 2001. More than 2,300 people visited the region for the event last year with ticket sales increasing 64 per cent compared to the previous event, to a total of 5,800 tickets sold. For more information, visit the Ord Valley Muster website at Comments attributed to Tourism Minister Roger Cook "The Ord Valley Muster has become a celebration of Kununurra's art, music and culture offerings, attracting significant benefits for regional businesses. "I encourage all those considering visiting the region for the event to book tickets as soon as they're on sale and book in your accommodation and tourism activities. "Whether it's a trip to stunning Lake Argyle or a visit to the outback town of Wyndham, there's so much to do in the East Kimberley and incredible untouched landscapes to explore." Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan "This fabulous event which started life as an outback concert has morphed into a richly textured festival that celebrates all that is Kimberley life. "This festival puts the spotlight on the East Kimberley; promoting pride, ownership and unity. "It also brings home the bacon in tourism dollars - adding to economic opportunities." Tourism Minister's office - 6552 6500 Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6200
State Solicitor of Western Australia appointed to the District Court11938Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/05/2022 6:15:33 AM2022-05-17T06:15:00Z Nicholas Egan PSM appointed as a Judge of the District Court State Solicitor lauded for response to COVID-19 pandemicAttorney General John Quigley is pleased to announce the appointment of State Solicitor Nicholas Egan PSM to the bench of the District Court. Mr Egan has gained extensive experience over a 34-year legal career in major litigation and disputes, as well as in commercial law. Having practiced in jurisdictions here and abroad, Mr Egan joined the State Solicitor's Office in 2005. He was promoted to Deputy State Solicitor (Commercial Section) in 2010 and was appointed State Solicitor in 2017. As State Solicitor, Mr Egan was responsible for managing Western Australia's largest legal practice and providing high-quality services to protect the State's legal and commercial interests. Mr Egan was awarded a Public Service Medal in 2021 and named on the Commonwealth COVID-19 Honour Roll for his outstanding work during the pandemic. He was awarded the Australian Government Lawyer of the Year in 2009 by the Australian Corporate Lawyers' Association. Mr Egan will replace current District Court Judge and former State Solicitor, His Honour Judge Timothy Sharp, who will be retiring from the court. The Director General of the Department of Justice has appointed Ms Angela Komninos as Acting State Solicitor, while a recruitment process is undertaken to fill the role. Comments attributed to Attorney General John Quigley "I congratulate Mr Egan on his appointment and welcome him as the newest Judge of the District Court. "Mr Egan has worked tirelessly to assist the Government in its response to the COVID-19 pandemic. "The success of that response has been in part due to the commitment of Mr Egan and the staff of the State Solicitor's Office. "I have no doubt that Mr Egan will continue to dedicate himself to the service of the people of Western Australia as a valued member of the judiciary. "I also take this opportunity to thank retiring judge, His Honour Judge Timothy Sharp, for his service as a District Court Judge and for 10 years as Deputy President of the State Administrative Tribunal. I wish him well in his retirement." Minister's office - 6552 6800
Wear orange on Wednesday to thank the SES11936Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/05/2022 4:00:30 AM2022-05-17T04:00:00Z Western Australian community encouraged to don orange in recognition of State Emergency Service SES volunteers generously give their time to keep Western Australians safe Another way to celebrate National Volunteering Week 2022 #BetterTogether Perth landmarks will be lit up orange tomorrow to recognise the significant contribution of State Emergency Service (SES) volunteers and the State Government is asking the public to show their support. Wear Orange Wednesday (WOW Day) is an annual day of celebration for the SES and Western Australians are encouraged to wear orange in support of the State's dedicated volunteers. Fraser Avenue in Kings Park, the Bell Tower and Matagarup Bridge are just some of the landmarks set to light up in Perth's CBD, while a number of local governments will do the same throughout regional areas. SES volunteers work tirelessly to assist the community in preparing for, responding to and recovering from emergencies throughout Western Australia. Highly skilled SES units respond to vertical rescues, storms, cyclones, floods, car crashes and land searches, and provide vital support during bushfires. Over the past year, volunteers have devoted more than 23,700 hours of service across 2,300 incidents. They assisted with the search for missing child Cleo Smith, helped communities respond to severe flooding in the Kimberley and deployed personnel to New South Wales to support exhausted local crews dealing with major flooding. Comments attributed to Emergency Services Minister Stephen Dawson "SES volunteers leave their homes, jobs and loved ones without hesitation to help other people when emergency or disaster strikes. "They make themselves available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and travel from every corner of the State to help those in need, and for all that we say thank you. "Recently SES volunteers were deployed to New South Wales after it was hit by flooding, which highlights their incredibly selfless and community-minded nature. "More than 2,100 SES volunteers provide the WA community with a valued and vital service, and I would encourage everyone to consider wearing something orange tomorrow to show their appreciation." Minister's office - 6552 5800
Vision for new $33.8 million Armadale TAFE campus taking shape11935Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/05/2022 3:45:25 AM2022-05-17T03:45:00Z New $33.8 million South Metropolitan TAFE Armadale campus design finalised and tender advertised New multi-storey centre will provide training in childcare, business, community services, mental health and education Project will increase learning opportunities in Armadale, particularly for youthA new TAFE campus in Armadale is one step closer to reality, with the designs for the $33.8 million project finalised and tender advertised for its construction. South Metropolitan TAFE will deliver industry relevant training across a range of areas, including childcare, community services, mental health, business, education support and general education at the purpose-built campus. The contemporary facilities will also have specialist areas for logistics, information technology, emerging industries and cyber security. The new training campus will enable South Metropolitan TAFE to consolidate vocational training in the area, with learning currently occurring across three ageing leased premises in the Armadale town centre. Designed by Armstrong Collective architects, the campus will be a vibrant community hub and help revitalise the local area. It will be located on Church Avenue within the town centre and a short distance from the Armadale train station. The multi-level building will have state-of-the-art facilities, including simulated childcare for early learning education, classrooms, computer laboratories, simulated office space, meeting rooms, a crèche and a student hub, which will include food and drink preparation areas. The Armadale Jobs and Skills Centre will also relocate to the new campus, connecting the local community with training and employment opportunities. The construction of the campus will create local jobs and once the new campus is open, it will deliver a boost for nearby businesses, with the increased student capacity bringing more people into the town centre. Construction is expected to commence in late 2022, with training to commence at the campus in Semester 2, 2024. Comments attributed to Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery "The new $33.8 million purpose-built TAFE campus will deliver a first-class learning environment in Armadale. "With state-of-the-art training facilities, this campus will provide more opportunities for locals, particularly young people, and significantly boost capacity to put students on pathways into long-term jobs. "This project is part of the WA Recovery Plan, with the McGowan Government investing a record $215.8 million to fund infrastructure upgrades across the State's TAFE colleges." Comments attributed to Armadale MLA Dr Tony Buti "I've long advocated for the new Armadale TAFE campus, which will help train the next generation of essential workers, preparing students for jobs of the future. "Not only will the new campus make studying locally a more attractive option, it will also become more integrated with the local community, aiding the continued revitalisation of Armadale. "This project is key to the future of Armadale and those who live here, so I look forward to the new campus welcoming its first students and boosting training opportunities in Perth's south-east." Minister's office - 6552 5700
Major boost to support research aimed at improving health outcomes11934Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/05/2022 2:11:37 AM2022-05-17T02:00:00Z $2.3 million awarded for Fellowships aimed at increasing uptake of research findings into health care and improve health outcomes Implementation Science Fellowships will be conducted in partnership with WA Country Health Service Four fellowship recipients will strive to identify new strategies and progress innovative ideas in Western Australia's public health system in two streams covering Aboriginal, and country and regional health. The Implementation Science Fellowship Program is funded through the McGowan Government's Future Health Research and Innovation Fund (FHRIF). The FHRIF provides a secure source of funding to drive health and medical research, innovation and commercialisation. A total of $2.3 million in funding has been awarded for implementation science research in four program areas. Clinical Yarning(Dr Ivan Lin, The University of Western Australia)Clinical Yarning strives to improve the communication between healthcare clinicians and Aboriginal patients to ensure better access to quality health care. This research program will be trialled initially in the Mid-West region and if successful, will be expanded to other WA country areas. Paediatric 'Escalation' System(Associate Professor Fenella Gill, Curtin University)The 'Escalation' system improves the processes for detecting and responding to the clinical deterioration of children in hospital in WA. The system fully integrates family involvement into a paediatric early warning system. This research program will evaluate the scale up and implementation of the 'Escalation' system at the WA Country Health Service and further research will be conducted to strengthen the involvement of and improve benefits to Aboriginal children and their families. Beating Cancer (Dr Mary Kennedy, Edith Cowan University) Research suggests eating well and being active following a cancer diagnosis can help with better outcomes. This research program seeks to develop better nutritional and exercise regimes to support regional patients battling cancer, and aims to generate the first evidence-based blueprint for the integration of nutrition into cancer care delivery in country and regional areas of WA. Optimising Health Service(Professor Suzanne Robinson, Curtin University)Co-ordinating care in country and regional communities across vast areas is challenging. This research program aims to improve processes and use technology to provide a real-time view of the WA country health system. The research will find ways to improve situational awareness, effectiveness, efficiency and operational management across the WA Country Health Service, and ultimately lead to better health outcomes for those living in regional WA. Details of the Implementation Science Fellowships Program recipients can be found on the FHRIF website. Comments attributed to Medical Research Minister Stephen Dawson "These are exciting research programs that address challenges in the WA public health system. "The WA Country Health Service spans 2.5 million square kilometres, so we need to be innovative with new ways of providing the best care to regional WA. "We are proud to be funding and supporting these novel research programs to find better ways to care for Western Australians." Comments attributed to WA Country Health Service Board Chair Dr Neale Fong "WA Country Health Service is very excited to be involved in these innovative trials and will observe the progress with great interest and anticipation. "We're always open to fresh ideas and different ways of delivering quality health care." Minister's office - 6552 5800
Drive-through collection sites for free RATs for close contacts11933Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/05/2022 1:20:14 AM2022-05-17T01:15:00Z New drive-through collection sites to open across the Perth metropolitan area for close contacts with no symptoms to collect free RATs Further supports daily testing requirements for close contacts RAT collection points at metropolitan vaccination clinics and testing clinics in the regions remain unchanged at this stage Households who have not yet received their free 15 RATs have now been emailed and can choose to pick up their RATs from a collection point The State Government's WA free RAT program continues to expand to provide Western Australians with easy access to free rapid antigen tests (RATs). Three drive-through sites across the Perth metropolitan area will open from tomorrow (May 18) in Joondalup, Jandakot and Bassendean to provide Western Australians who are close contacts with more convenient options for collecting their RATs. Close contacts with no symptoms can leave their place of isolation provided they undertake a daily RAT, wear a mask at all times outside the home and avoid high-risk settings. Vaccination clinics in the Perth metropolitan area and regional collection points at testing clinics will also continue to distribute free RATs for close contacts. To access free RATs at these locations, close contacts with no symptoms are required to verbally confirm they are a close contact to access their 10 free RATs and can collect on behalf of others in their household - up to a maximum of 30 RATs. People who registered to receive free RATs but experienced delivery issues have now been emailed and can choose to either pick up their RATs from a collection point or ask for the RATs to be redelivered to their address. People who are collecting their household RAT allocation must show the email they received when they selected to collect their RATs. A full list of collection points and opening hours is available at People who return a positive RAT result must register their result online with the Department of Health. Those who do not have access to the online registration system must still report their positive test result by contacting 13 COVID (13 26843). Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "We want to make it as easy as possible for close contacts to access free RATs in order to fulfil their daily testing requirements. "The new drive-through collection points make it even more convenient for the community to pick up RATs. "The 2022-23 Budget includes $1.6 billion in COVID-19 response measures to support the community, including making sure free RATs are readily available for the community." Comments attributed to Health Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson "The WA free RAT program continues to support close contacts in the community all over the State in managing the impacts of COVID-19. "Drive-through collection sites mean that fewer close contacts are attending vaccination clinics and mixing with vulnerable members in the community who are receiving their winter booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccination. "I am proud of the efforts of Western Australians in doing the right thing and playing their part in accessing RATs as needed in order to help keep the community safe." Minister's office - 6552 5200
Volunteers celebrated as the lifeblood of regional WA11932Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/05/2022 1:05:50 AM2022-05-17T01:00:00Z Volunteers recognised as the 'glue' holding regional communities together National Volunteer Week recognising the contribution of volunteers across WA Volunteers vital to the social fabric of regional communities As part of this year's National Volunteer Week 2022 and its theme of #BetterTogether, the State Government acknowledges the important community roles played by volunteers in regional Western Australia. Volunteer work is vital to the social fabric of many regional communities and volunteering is an integral part of life across rural and regional WA. Volunteering builds social cohesion and contributes to strong and resilient communities. Many sporting, community and emergency services organisations in regional centres depend heavily on volunteers. This was on display more than ever, over the past year, when volunteers stepped up to assist several communities by providing essential services to support recovery after extensive damage from cyclones and bushfires. When Ex-Tropical Cyclone Seroja left a trail of destruction throughout the Mid-West and Wheatbelt in April of last year, State Emergency Service volunteers from the South-West region, hundreds of kilometres away from the scene, were among the first to respond. Working together with Volunteering WA, improvements to the website are making it easier to manage and recruit volunteer assistance in local areas during times of emergency, community recovery and other significant events. National Volunteer Week provides opportunities to highlight the meaningful contribution of regional volunteers and acknowledge the significant impact they make to each of their communities. Comments attributed to Volunteering Minister Stephen Dawson "Volunteer activities have for decades been the 'glue' holding regional communities together through the best and worst of times. "Anyone who's grown up or lived in a regional centre will most likely have been involved in some activity where volunteers are integral, starting perhaps with playing junior sport and later being involved as a coach or official. "Regionally, Western Australians often get involved with the local bushfire brigades, the St John Ambulance and the State Emergency Service or special interest movements such as Landcare, all of whom depend very heavily on volunteers in regional WA. "Similarly, community support organisations such as St Vincent de Paul and the Red Cross, to name just two of many, rely on volunteers for outreach and fundraising in regional centres. "Volunteering is at the heart of every community and living with COVID-19 has made it even more significant. "Local governments in regional WA are very strong supporters of volunteering, in many cases having volunteer development as an integral part of their business plans." Minister's office - 6552 5800
Six WA builders join State-wide panel to bolster Modular Build Program11931Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/05/2022 12:41:43 AM2022-05-16T23:00:00Z Six building companies appointed to State-wide modular build panel Two of the companies have operations in regional WA The establishment of the panel will assist with the delivery of the Modular Build Program The Modular Build Program will deliver 150 new social homes in regional WA Housing Minister John Carey today announced the establishment of a State-wide modular build panel, to assist with the delivery of the Government's Modular Build Program. Six Western Australian building companies have been appointed to the panel to design and construct modular residential housing throughout the State, including homes in regional areas. The successful companies are Evoke Living Homes - Northam; Fleetwood Building Solutions - High Wycombe; Fox Modular - Gnangara; Modular WA - Wangara; Murray River North - Pinjarra and Maddington; and Quality Builders - Forrestfield. The six companies were awarded entry to the panel following an evaluation process which assessed their capacity to deliver modular housing, particularly for regional WA. The establishment of the panel will help to further reduce delivery timeframes, with all the participating companies pre-approved to deliver modular housing projects. The State Government is currently engaging a number of other companies, including small and medium size builders, which could see the panel expand further in the future. The Modular Build Program was established by the Housing Minister late last year, and is one of a number of initiatives put in place to speed up delivery times for new social housing. To date, contracts have been awarded for 36 new homes in the Modular Build Program, all for regional WA. The first homes are expected to be delivered in the coming weeks. Comments attributed to Housing Minister John Carey "We face a heated construction market in Western Australia, which is why I have been implementing significant reforms to social housing delivery, including major investments in modular homes. "We expect the establishment of the modular build panel will reduce delivery timeframes by a further four to six weeks, as we're engaging companies that have been through a rigorous assessment process, and been pre-approved to deliver modular housing projects. "The panel may also be expanded in the future, further bolstering the capacity to deliver modular social housing in Western Australia. "To date we have contracted 36 new homes through the Modular Build Program, all designated for locations in regional WA, with the first homes expected to be delivered to site within weeks. "The McGowan Government is investing $2.1 billion into social housing, which includes the record investment of $875 million as part of the 2021-22 State Budget. This is the single largest, one-off investment into social housing in the State's history. "Through this investment, we will deliver up to 3,300 new social housing dwellings and carry out refurbishment and maintenance work to many thousands more. The maintenance and refurbishment program will be critical to ensuring these homes remain part of our State's social housing stock for many years to come." Minister's office - 6552 5300
First homes delivered under the Modular Build Program on their way to the Pilbara11930Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/05/2022 12:30:31 AM2022-05-16T22:00:00Z First social homes delivered through the McGowan Government's Modular Build Program Four homes are on their way to the Pilbara town of Tom Price $16.5 million worth of contracts signed for 36 new modular social homes in regional WA A total of 36 modular social homes have been contracted through the program The homes will be delivered in the Pilbara, Great Southern, Goldfields-Esperance, South-West, Wheatbelt and Mid-West regions Modular construction is helping to speed up delivery of social housing in WA The first social homes to be delivered under the McGowan Government's Modular Build Program are on their way to the Pilbara, where they will provide additional social housing in the region. The four homes were recently completed on site in Perth and have been delivered to Tom Price, where they will undergo completion, including plumbing and electrical works. A further five modular social homes are under construction for delivery to South Hedland in the coming months. A total of 36 new homes have been contracted through the Modular Build Program, with properties allocated to regional centres in the Pilbara, Great Southern, Goldfields-Esperance, South-West, Wheatbelt and Mid-West. The Modular Build Program was established by the Housing Minister as a faster alternative to deliver social housing in the current heated construction market. Modular construction involves high-quality housing built off-site in a factory before being transported to a location. A total of 200 social homes are anticipated to be delivered through the Modular Build Program over a two year period, including 150 for regional Western Australia. The program was made possible by the McGowan Government's $875 million allocation towards social housing in the 2021-22 State Budget, the largest one-off investment ever made by a WA State Government. The Modular Build Program is among a number of new investment programs being delivered by the McGowan Government to boost social housing as fast as possible, including a new spot purchasing program and rapid timber-frame build program. The State Government is investing around $2.4 billion on social housing, which will include the delivery of around 3,300 new homes. Comments attributed to Housing Minister John Carey "There is no doubt we face a heated construction market, which is why I established the Modular Build Program as an alternative way to get new social housing delivered as fast as possible. "The fact that within around six months of these contracts being awarded, Tom Price will see four new homes delivered to site is a fantastic outcome. "Had these homes been built on site via traditional construction methods, we expect these homes would still be a long way from delivery. "Modular construction offers many advantages, including less risk of weather delays and works able to be carried out on site simultaneously with the factory build. The companies that deliver these homes have all the necessary trades in-house, so they have the capacity to deliver faster than traditional builds in the current market. "Since becoming Housing Minister, I have been committed to reforming our housing delivery and investing in a range of measures, including modular, spot purchasing and rapid timber-frame construction, to get new social housing delivered in our heated construction market. "We need to find solutions during challenging times, and that is exactly what we are doing by reforming how social housing is delivered and diversifying our investments to ensure we maximise our opportunities to get housing out as fast as possible." Minister's office - 6552 5300