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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 09 Hansard (Tuesday, 11 August 2015) . . Page.. 2543 ..

I could go on and on, but I know that my colleague Mr Doszpot also wishes to speak, so I will leave it there. But I am quite happy at some further point to talk more about the need for Auslan certificate II and III courses.

The government’s response to the recommendation on this matter in the estimates committee report is that it is “noted”. It says that “there are two pathways”, which is quite true, but as we have seen from the CIT’s own website we will not have certificate II and III courses, because they are only enrolling previous students for this year in certificate II and III. So next year there will be no demand for certificate II and III courses and the CIT will be able to say, “We don’t need to run the course.” The ACT is a whole-of-jurisdiction rollout for the NDIS, and I think it is absolutely criminal and shameful that this government is not committed to providing communication access for people who are deaf.

MR DOSZPOT (Molonglo) (10.57): Prior to going to my comments on CIT, I would like to thank Ms Lawder for her comments regarding the specific problems that members of our hearing impaired community have with the teaching of Auslan in the ACT. Ms Lawder and I share some shadow portfolio responsibilities, and we have both been contacted by members of the community regarding the extreme difficulty they have in trying to convince the education directorate, the minister and CIT about the specific issues that Ms Lawder has already touched upon.

Again it highlights the lack of consultation for which this government are getting quite a reputation. They are certainly making it very hard for the community to get across the message where there are extreme needs that need to be addressed. Ms Lawder’s comments reflect the wishes of quite a number of the hearing impaired community, and I have also received quite a lot of concerns from the community, regarding the way that CIT is addressing the requirements that are so badly needed.

Before I go to the subject matter of my remarks, I would like to place on record my appreciation for the work that the late Mr Marron did as Chief Executive of CIT and to express sadness at his passing. Mr Marron came to the organisation at a difficult time, given the issue of bullying had been quite established and was systemic in that workplace, and he was charged with the task of getting it sorted. That is not easy at any time, and certainly not for someone who was not well at that time. Notwithstanding the difficult questions that needed to be asked of and about CIT, Mr Marron always demonstrated absolute professionalism, and I very much respected him for that.

During estimates, information was sought about the planned closure of the Woden campus and about the new campus at Tuggeranong. The new Tuggeranong campus is expected to open in 2016, and Woden is supposed to be in a staged transition next year also. But with both these moves now less than five months away, very little is known. I am sure it is of great concern to parents and to students wishing to avail themselves of a CIT education. If they want to start in first semester next year, nothing much is known about when, where and what courses might be on offer in the south of Canberra. One has to ask whether this is just another example of bad planning and even poorer communication.

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