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Tuesday, 21 August 1984
Page: 84

(Question No. 954)

Senator Archer asked the Minister representing the Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations, upon notice, on 7 June 1984:

(1) Were community employment program funds provided to 'IRIS-Tasmania's Feminist Newsletter', $33 721 being 100 per cent of the total cost to employ 3 workers (possibly women) in the production of the paper.

(2) Is it compatible with Government policy to fund an item which in itself is so blatantly sexist while claiming among other things to be non-sexist.

(3) Is the paper sold or distributed freely; if so, to whom, by whom and at what expense.

Senator Button —The Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

(1) No. An application for funding under the community employment program (CEP) was submitted by 'IRIS-Tasmania's Feminist Newsletter'. This application was assessed and subsequently deferred as it did not comply with the program's guidelines. The sponsor has had discussions with officers of the CEP joint secretariat, and is to rework the proposal to more fully comply with the program 's guidelines and objectives.

(2) All applications for funding under CEP are assessed according to the CEP guidelines. If projects meet the program's objectives of assisting the long term unemployed and disadvantaged groups in the labour market, and also comply with all other guideline requirements, then those projects will be considered on their merits by the community-based State Consultative Committee. The Commonwealth and State governments approve projects for funding on the basis of the Consultative Committees' recommendations.

(3) The newspaper is available by subscription and is also distributed by voluntary labour to selected outlets at a cost of $1 per copy.