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Canberra, Hobart to get improved RPH services



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MINISTER FOR TRANSPORT AND COMMUNICATIONS

Kim C Beazley, MP

59/91

9 October 1991

CANBERRA, HOBART TO GET IMPROVED RPH SERVICES

Licence applications for Radio for the Print Handicapped (RPH) stations in Canberra and Hobart were sought today by the Minister for Transport and Communications, Kim Beazley.

'These new stations are part of the Government's commitment to bring RPH broadcasters onto the broadcast band, to license them under the Broadcasting Act and to increase their broadcasting range by boosting their transmitting power', Mr Beazley said.

'The wider coverage means the RPH service will be now heard on all radio receivers.

'Canberra and Hobart already have RPH stations operating under the Radiocommunications Act, but both will need to reapply for licences to operate under the Broadcasting Act.

'RPH programming includes readings from newspapers, periodicals and novels, as well as a full range of topical information.

'But such radio services are not only for the blind and visually impaired. Those suffering a wide range of disorders from stroke victims to dyslexics benefit from the programming.

'Immigrants who understand spoken but not written English, and the functionally illiterate also benefit'.

The AM broadcasting frequencies to be allocated to the RPH stations in Canberra and Hobart will allow full access to the services. The frequencies are expected to be 864kHz in Hobart and 1125kHz in Canberra.

Mr Beazley said applications for the RPH licences, to be lodged with the Australian Broadcasting Tribunal (ABT) would close on 6 December. The ABT would hold a public inquiry to grant the licences.

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PARLIAMENTARY LIBRARY — MICAH

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1 There may be as many as two million print-handicapped people in Australia and in time most will have access to an RPH service', Mr Beazley said.

Media contact:

Minister's Office., Gary O'Neill (06) 277 7200 Department, Michael Pocock (06) 274 7187 Australian Broadcasting Tribunal (02) 959 7811