Page 153 - Week 01 - Wednesday, 11 February 2015

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discussion with Mandy over this matter. There needs to be a distinction between offerings through CIT, which are there and in place, and the concern that has been raised about the pool of available interpreters across the community. I have raised that with Disability. I have asked them to make contact and to write formally to the NDIA, given that we are six months into the NDIS, to see whether they have been able to identify a need through the plans that are put in place. That is the advice that I am seeking. I am exploring that. Once I get that information, we can respond accordingly.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Doszpot.

MR DOSZPOT: Minister, have you had conversations with the NDIA and the deaf resource centre about such courses and, if so, what was the outcome of those?

MS BURCH: Thank you, Mr Doszpot. I think, in part, I have answered that in reply to the first question. I have not had a direct conversation with the NDIA, but I have asked the directorate to approach them and to seek some formal advice, based on the evidence that may come through the six-month planning.

There are a small number of interpreters in town, but a certificate III will not make an Auslan interpreter anyway. So there is still other work, other skills and other attributes that need to be attained beyond a cert III—that is available through CIT—to make sure that we get that pool of interpreters.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Lawder.

MS LAWDER: Minister, what research has the government undertaken about claims that Auslan interpreters will be in high demand and that Canberra will not be able to provide sufficient access to training, and will you make that information publicly available?

MS BURCH: Once I get some advice back through the department, based on the information through the National Disability Insurance Agency, I will be more than happy to provide that advice. I will be standing in this place tomorrow with a routine update on the NDIA, so in future updates I can include that information.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Lawder.

MS LAWDER: Minister, what will happen to the vocational education courses in Auslan if you are not liaising sufficiently with the NDIA about the future of Auslan in the ACT?

MS BURCH: There are two separate activities or areas of interest. There is vocational training, which is on offer through CIT at the moment, and then there is the question that has been raised by Auslan interpreters, who have spoken to many in this place, about the pool of interpreters in the community. They are two separate matters. Certainly, I am hoping that we can get some further advice or information about the demand for interpreters. We know there are a few interpreters in town. They are well used, but I am not quite sure how great the demand is for more interpreters. Hopefully, the information through care planning will provide that to us.

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