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Notice given 15 August 2007

877  Senator Stott Despoja: To move—That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) the week beginning 19 August is Hearing Awareness Week 2007,

(ii) currently one in six Australians are deaf or hearing impaired, and

(iii) this is projected to increase to one in four Australians by 2050;

(b) further notes that:

(i) since 1 July 2007, the Film Finance Corporation (FFC) requires captioning on all FFC financed films,


 (ii) it is 4 years since the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission and the Australian free-to-air television industry agreed to increase captioning to 52 per cent of total programming by 31 December 2007,

(iii) only 10 cinemas in Australia screen captioned movies,

(iv) promotional material, community service announcements, repeats and daytime sporting events are usually not captioned, and

(v) digital multi-channels do not provide captioning; and

(c) calls on the Government to:

(i) implement annual targets for the free-to-air channels over the next 3 years to achieve 100 per cent captioning by 31 December 2010,

(ii) remove the exemption from captioning requirements from digital multi-channels, and

(iii) explain what it is doing to ensure that nearly four million deaf and hearing-impaired Australians will be able to access cinemas to see the movies the FFC is ensuring are captioned.