Satellite dish to give better connectivity in the South West

Communities in the South West will have access to better broadband connectivity during natural disasters, with the rollout of a new satellite dish by NBN Co on emergency buildings around Australia, such as Rural Fire Service depots and evacuation centres.

Federal Member for Forrest Nola Marino welcomed the installation of a satellite dish at the Nannup Recreation and Community Centre, and said this was a crucial investment from the Government to help people in disaster-affected areas stay connected with family and essential services.

“These satellite services will also act as a critical piece of infrastructure for emergency service workers in the South West, by providing them with connectivity to help manage their disaster response and recovery efforts”, Mrs Marino said.

Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, welcomed the latest satellite dish installations from NBN Co, ahead of the next bushfire season.

“By offering broadband connectivity powered by the National Broadband Network’s Sky Muster satellites — which have coverage of all 7.7 million square kilometres of Australia and operate even when terrestrial mobile or fixed line networks have ceased operating — these dishes will help people in disaster affected locations stay in contact before, during and after a bushfire or other disaster,” Minister Fletcher said.

The satellite dishes are part of the Morrison Government’s $37.1m Securing Telecommunications Against Natural Disasters package to improve the resilience of communications networks. More information on the package can be found on the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications’ website.

Weekly Wrap – 19 February 2021

I hope you have had a good week. Here are some of the announcements made by the Government this week. I encourage you to read the information regarding the vaccinations.
Marking the Anniversary of the Apology to the Stolen Generation
The Prime Minister and Minister for Indigenous Australians, as well as the Leader of the Opposition and the Shadow Minister, spoke in the House of Representatives to mark the recent anniversary of the apology to the Stolen Generations. From the landmark National Agreement on Closing the Gap, the ongoing work to empower Indigenous Australians through the Indigenous Voice co-design process and ongoing work to ensure the economic recovery provides opportunity for our people through skills, jobs and wealth creation, the Morrison Government is committed to working in genuine partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. More information can be found here.
First Pfizer Vaccine Doses Arrive in Australia
More than 142,000 doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech COZVID-19 vaccine have arrived at Sydney airport in a major milestone in Australia’s response to the pandemic. This is the first shipment of 20 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine the Government has secured as part of Australia’s COVID-19 Vaccine and Treatment Strategy. More information can be found here.
TGA Approves AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine
The Therapeutic Goods Administration has today approved the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for use in Australia following a full and thorough assessment process. The vaccine has met the required standards for safety, quality and efficacy and will be provided free to Australians. This means Australia now has two safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines available. More information can be found here.
Gas Prices Continued to Fall Sharply According to ACCC Gas Inquiry
Gas prices have continued to fall sharply, further easing pressure on Australian households and industry, according to the latest Australian Competition and Consumer Commission Gas Inquiry report. The ACCC Gas Inquiry 2017-2025 January 2021 report found prices offered by producers and retailers for 2021 supply in the domestic market fell significantly over the first half of 2020, representing a significant shift in market pricing. More information can be found here.
Report Shows Record Detached Home Starts in 2021 Thanks to HomeBuilder
The latest Housing Industry Association’s National and State Outlooks forecast a record level of detached homes will commence construction in 2021. New detached home construction commencement is forecast to rise to 130,000 in 2021, eclipsing the previous record of 120,000 starts in 2018. The Outlook also forecasts that detached home starts will rise in every state and territory over the 2020/21 financial year compared to the previous. Today’s figures are a credit to Australia’s tradies and to the support HomeBuilder has provided the industry as we build our economic comeback from COVID-19 recession. More information can be found here.
I trust this update will be of interest to you. Why not forward it to friends or family members in the area who may find it useful. They can subscribe to receive my email updates here.
Warm regards,

Weekly Wrap – 12 February 2021

I hope you are keeping well and found some time this week to do the things you enjoy. I wanted to thank each of you for continuing to follow health advice. Social distancing and regular hand washing are some of the best defences we have against COVID-19 to ensure we can keep our loved ones safe. Here are some of the announcements from this week:

Training begins for our Vaccination Workforce
The first Government funded training modules for the COVID-19 vaccination workforce are now available, an important step in the national vaccine roll-out. Delivered in partnership with the Australian College of Nursing, training is being provided free to all authorised COVID-19 vaccination providers. The training modules cover handling and storage of vaccines, safety and monitoring. More information can be found here.

Supporting the Partners of ADF personnel
Partners of Australian Defence Force members will receive simpler and faster access to employment support and opportunities through improvements to the Partner Employment Assistance Program. Minister for Defence Personnel Darren Chester said ADF partners have access to up to $1,500 to help gain employment, and improvements are making the application process simpler and faster. More information can be found here.

Taking Delivery of Australia’s Future Strike Fighter
The Prime Minister was on hand this week to see the first F-35A aircraft being inducted into BAE Systems Australia’s maintenance depot, the next major milestone in the Joint Strike Fighter Program. The new Strike Fighters will help to protect and secure Australia’s interests while also creating jobs, with more than 50 local companies already sharing in $2.7 billion worth of contracts as part of the F-35 Program. The F-35A fleet is now 33 strong and ready to deploy on operations. More information can be found here.

Better Understanding Mental Health
The Morrison Government has launched the first phase of Australia’s National Study of Mental Health and Well being. Up to 17,000 Australians, aged 16 to 85 will take part in the study. This comprehensive survey will help us better understand how Australians manage their mental health and how they access support. Almost half of Australians experience some form of mental illness at some point in their lifetime, and the findings will play a vital role in the planning and delivery of better local services now and in the future. More information can be found here.

Providing hope for Australians suffering from Neurofibromatosis
The Morrison Government is investing $8 million to support the Children’s Tumour Foundation and research into neurofibromatosis, a devastating condition which can cause cancer, blindness, deafness and chronic pain. The funding will support ground breaking research projects to develop new treatment options and to improve healthcare outcomes. There are three types of neurofibromatosis and the most prevalent, type 1, affects up to one in every 2,500 Australians. More information can be found here.

2021 Prime Minister’s Prizes for excellence in Science Teaching

Nominations recently opened for the Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science, including the Teaching Prize for Primary and Secondary Teaching.

These awards are about giving our world-leading researchers and inventors the recognition they deserve, along with the teachers inspiring our next generation of scientists.

The past 12 months have brought the work of Australia’s science community into the spotlight. The COVID-19 response is just a small insight into the incredible work of the Australian scientific community, with last year’s Prizes acknowledging breakthroughs from fundamental physics to lifesaving new cancer treatments.

We have many dedicated teachers working to instil a love of enquiry and to further the STEM skills of our local students. It’s part of what makes our local community so special.

The Federal Government encourages you to nominate any teacher you believe has made an outstanding contribution to inspire their students in the science disciplines.

Nominations close on 9 March and you can view the guidelines here:

Weekly Wrap – 29 January 2021

I hope you were able to get out and support some of our fantastic community groups on Australia Day. It was great to see so many new Australians take the oath and receive their Citizenship. With the new school year only a matter of days away, my best wishes go out to parents, students and school staff as they prepare to return next week! Here are some of the key announcements we’ve made this week:

Pfizer vaccine approved
The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has provisionally approved the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for use in Australia. The Pfizer vaccine has met strict standards for safety, quality and efficacy. The TGA provisional approval is for individuals 16 years of age and older. Two doses will be required – at least 21 days apart. In Australia COVID-19 vaccines will be rolled out in five phases over the coming months and, over time, will involve more than 1,000 vaccination administration sites. More information can be found here. More information can be found here.

Australia’s COVID-19 vaccine information campaign begins
The Government’s public information campaign to encourage Australians to get a COVID-19 vaccine has begun. The campaign will keep Australians fully informed and up to date about the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines as they become available, including when, how and where to get the jab. The information in this campaign, based on expert, and independent, medical advice, will help answer the questions people may have. More information can be found here.

Recognising the exceptional work of Australians in the COVID-19 response
Australians are being encouraged to nominate those people, professionals and volunteers, who have displayed extraordinary service and achievement during the COVID-19 response and recovery, for an Australian National Honour. Individuals recognised for their contribution, service or achievement relating to COVID-19 will feature on a dedicated COVID-19 honours roll as well as the official Australian honours database from the Queen’s Birthday in June. More information can be found here.

Government boosts maritime security
The Morrison Government will invest $1 billion to commence the early development of advanced guided weapons to enhance Australia’s maritime security. This will modernise the Navy’s platforms to project and maintain sea control. This project will provide our Navy with leading-edge long-range anti-ship missiles, extended range surface-to-air missiles, advanced light weight torpedoes, and maritime land strike capabilities. This investment is part of the Government’s $183 billion Naval Shipbuilding Plan, which will see up to 23 classes of vessels built here in Australia, creating thousands of jobs and significant opportunities for Australian industry. More information can be found here.

Warm regards,