Page 3841 - Week 09 - Wednesday, 24 August 2011

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Hansard. I sincerely hope—and I would ask Mr Smyth as the deputy leader to ensure, for Mrs Dunne’s sake—that leave for her for tomorrow is actually applied for, and it will be automatically given by this place.

Hearing Awareness Week

MR DOSZPOT (Brindabella) (7.06): I find it quite incredible that we have the current disability minister with us tonight as well as a past disability minister and that they have both been very keen to pursue fairly vindictive rhetoric against one of our members who is not here this evening. But they have failed to make any reference to one of their portfolio issues that should be very much aware of. This is Hearing Awareness Week, Mr Hargreaves, but not one mention was made of that by either you or by Ms Burch.

I pay tribute to the ACT Deafness Resource Centre for the work they have done today with an exhibition in honour of Hearing Awareness Week and to contribute to the disabled community. Pete Halsey, the executive officer, spoke at the opening ceremony today, and I would just like to quote a little bit from his speech that was in the program. Pete Halsey, Churchill Fellow in 2009 and Executive Officer of the ACT Deafness Resource Centre, said:

For those of you who don’t know me, I wear a Cochlear Implant and a Hearing Aid. I consider myself very fortunate to have these and would be lost without them. In fact, why not come and talked with me today? You will see I have the most wonderful technology. It is like owning a lovely Jaguar car, but having only a pothole gravel road to drive on—sometimes you get by, but never in top gear. With this in mind, there is a great deal of room for society to reciprocate and make communication more user-friendly for those who don’t hear so well. It is not a big ask. Hopefully, with added support under the National Disability Strategy, a more inclusive future is coming on the horizon.

I would also like to pay tribute to some of the organisations that exhibited at the expo the ACT Deafness Resource Centre organised: Audio Clinic, Australia Hears, Australia Hearing Canberra, Better Hearing Australia, Brindabella Hearing Centre, Canberra Audiology, Canberra Blind Society, Canberra Deaf Children Association, Canberra Deaf Club, Canberra Tinnitus Self-Help Group, Cochlear, Council on the Ageing, Canberra Deaf Teens, Disability ACT, Epilepsy ACT, Home Help Service, Department of Human Services, National Hearing Care, Office of Hearing Services, Oricom International, SeniorsLifestyle magazine, SCIC Canberra, SHOUT, Telstra Country Wide South East, the Shepherd Centre, Therapy ACT and Word of Mouth Technology, as well as the ACT Deafness Resource Centre and the ACT Department of Education and Training.

I visited many of the stalls, and in the time remaining I would like to talk about the Canberra Deaf Children Association. The Canberra Deaf Children Association—CDCA—is a non-profit community organisation that endeavours to provide support and information to parents and families on issues affecting deaf and hearing-impaired children. This includes all sorts of hearing loss, such as sensorineural conductive and unilateral. They also provide information to other interested people in the community, teachers and students.

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