Territory Stories

Discussion Paper Northern Territory Women's Strategy March 1992



Discussion Paper Northern Territory Women's Strategy March 1992

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Tabled Paper 764


Tabled Papers for 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994; Tabled Papers; ParliamentNT




Tabled by Marshall Perron


Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory under Standing Order 240. Where copyright subsists with a third party it remains with the original owner and permission may be required to reuse the material.




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Strategy for implementation of the National Plan, which was accepted by the TAFE Advisory Council in early 1991. The Women in TAFE Committee now operates as an informal network, not a committee. A current major policy document is the National Review of Post Compulsory Education and Training Report (Finn) which has significant implications for both the secondary and post compulsory education and training systems. The VEETAC Women's Standing Committee in its formal response to this report in principle, identified a number of issues of particular relevance to girls and women. Not surprisingly the TAFE system is widely regarded by women consulted as the chief and (in principle) most accessible means of training and retraining for women. This was felt to-apply particularly to those wishing to enter or re-enter the paid workforce. As one woman put it: "Training is one of the most important strategies for women's economic independence." It was clear, however, that women now see a number of barriers in the way of accessing TAFE courses. The most often-named of those barriers was cost. As TAFE plays such a significant role to acquire or upgrade skills, it was felt that women, as an economically disadvantaged group, were particularly disadvantaged by the introduction of a user-pays system. Associated costs such as child care, books and transport were already regarded as onerous. Most believed that fees will make TAFE courses out of the question because other necessities for family life are seen as a higher priority. Transport was seen as a difficulty, either because of isolation or because of poor public transport. Isolated women also felt disadvantaged by the TAFE system. Where colleges existed in isolated areas, it was remarked that courses tended to be limited either to trade or recreational courses, or both. It was felt that clerical or other skills training areas of interest to women were not regarded as a priority. 45

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