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Tuesday, 26 August 2008
Page: 6252


Mr Hawke asked the Minister for Youth, in writing, on 26 May 2008:

In respect of the consultation on the impact of Voluntary Student Unionism—(1) Was there a timeframe of only one month for organisations and individuals to provide submissions in response to the discussion paper entitled: ‘The Impact of Voluntary Student Unionism on Services, Amenities and Representation for Australian University Students’; if so, why was more time not provided.(2) During this process did she consult with: (a) student bodies; if so, which ones; (b) individual students; if so, in what form; (c) students and organisations not involved in political or sporting organisations at university; if so, which ones; and (d) service providers who have replaced those previously administered by the unions; if so, which ones.(3) Have all of the submissions received been made public.(4) Has she cancelled the comprehensive review of voluntary student unionism legislation scheduled for June 2008; if so, why.


Ms Kate Ellis (Minister for Youth and Minister for Sport) —The answer to the honourable member’s question is as follows:

(1)   The discussion paper ‘The Impact of Voluntary Student Unionism on Services, Amenities and Representation for Australian University Students” was released on 17 February 2008. The closing date for written submissions was 11 March 2008. I considered that this timeframe was adequate for the drafting of written submissions and face-to-face consultations with stakeholders, which were held from late February to mid March. The Government is considering the outcome of the consultations.

(2)  

(a)   I consulted with student bodies during the consultation process. I wrote to the following student organisations inviting them to provide a written submission to the review, and for representatives to attend a consultation forum. Past and present office bearers from relevant organisations were invited to participate in the consultations. This included past presidents of defunct student organisations. The relevant organisations are as follows:                 Flinders, One Flinders University; Adelaide University Union; Adelaide University Post Graduate Students Association; Unilife, University Of South Australia; National Union Of Student SA; Deakin University Student Association; La Trobe University Guild; La Trobe University Representative Council; Monash Student Association; RMIT Union; RMIT Post Graduate Association; Swinburne Student Union; Swinburne University Postgraduate Association; University Of Melbourne Student Union; University Of Melbourne Post Graduate Association; Victoria University Student Union; National Union Of Students Victoria; University Of Ballarat Student Association; Bendigo University Student Association; Student Association Ballarat Campus, Australian Catholic University; Student Services And Support, University of Tasmania; National Union Of Students Tasmania; Curtin Student Guild; ECU Student Guild; Murdoch University Guild Of Students; Student Association Of The University Of Notre Dame Australia; National Union Of Students Western Australia; Student Association North Sydney Campus, Australian Catholic University; SAM Macquarie University; University of New South Wales Student Central; University Of Newcastle Union; University Of Sydney Union; Sydney University Post graduate Representative Association; UTS Union; University of Western Sydney Student Association; The Postgraduate Association Of The University Of Western Sydney; WUSA University Of Wollongong; Student Services University Of Wollongong; National Union Of Students NSW; Coffs Harbour Student Association; Southern Cross University; Southern Cross University Postgraduate Association; Student Centre University Of New England; University Of Queensland Union; Student Administration Bond University; Student Administration, Gold Coast Campus Griffith University; Griffith University Postgraduate Students Association; Queensland University Of Technology Student Guild; University Of Southern Cross Student Guild; University Of Southern Queensland Student Guild; National Union Of Students QLD; Central Queensland University Student Association; James Cook Student Association; Batchelor Institute Of Indigenous Tertiary Education Student Representative Council; Charles Darwin University; ANU Students Association, University of Canberra Union Ltd; Charles Sturt Foundation; National Union of Students ACT.                 This list does not include the 67 sports and recreational organisations invited to participate in consultations.

(b)  

   In my media release of 17 February 2008 in which I announced the release of the discussion paper I invited all higher education stakeholders to participate in the consultations, including students.

(c)  

   See (b). The following organisations not involved in sporting or political activities were invited to attend as they use university facilities: Chisholm Institute of TAFE; Peninsula Health; City of Whittlesea; MacLeod College; Wodonga TAFE; Goulburn Ovens, Institute of TAFE; Melbourne Theatre Company; City of Ballarat; Committee for Ballarat; Mount Carmel College; TAFE WA; Campbelltown City Council; Kurmond Public School; St Andrew’s College; Ultimo TAFE; The Ascent Group Australia LTD; Armidale City Public School; Study Gold Coast Education and Training Network; Laidley Shire Council; Lockyer Valley Stroke and Carer Support Centre; Gatton State School; Chancellor State College; Holland Park High; MacGregor State High School; The Glennie School; Saint Ursula’s College; Rockhampton City Council; Trinity Anglican College; TAFE Riverina; Greater Southern Area Health Service.

(d)  

   Yes. On some campuses universities are directly providing services to students that were previously provided by student unions. All universities were consulted during the process.

(3)   162 submissions have been received, and 158 of these have been published. Three contributors have requested that their submissions not be published. One submission is under review prior to publication.

(4)   The current review of voluntary student unionism has been comprehensive and has superseded the review planned for June 2008 by the previous government.