March advocacy update 2023

It’s been another big month for advocacy across the country.

Federal Budget Submission

In case you missed it, we made a Federal Budget Submission: https://ausactive.org.au/news/ausactives-2023-24-federal-budget-submission/  that we sent to all Federal MP’s with 14 key recommendations to the government to improve the mental and physical health of Australians and prevent chronic disease. We’ve had some positive responses and feedback, with Barrie being invited to meetings with politicians to talk about our proposals. In particular he’ll be asking that politicians look at ways that professionals delivering physical activity, exercise and fitness services can better access My Aged Care and NDIS government funding to deliver programs to older people and people with a disability.

Engagement with Local Councils and State Government

We continue to talk to government about the Skip the Permit program, because we want to make it easier for trainers and instructors to get a permit to train people outdoors. One recent example involved the NSW State Government, who look after the Domain in Sydney, where our advocacy to reduce fees for PT’s training people received a pleasing outcome involving a reduction in the yearly permit fees by over 50% (representing a saving of $850). The NSW Government is also reviewing their booking system to make it easier for PT’s to apply for a permit to do sessions in the Domain. This is just one example of discussions that we are having with numerous local governments across Australia to make outdoor exercise more accessible.

Retail Leases Act NSW

We’ve also had success in asking that the NSW Government, as part of their consultation on the Retail Leases Act 1994 NSW (the Act) to give gyms, fitness centres, yoga, barre, Pilates, Tai Chi and dance studios better protection under their commercial leases. Amongst many other benefits, this means health and exercise facilities will have access to a low-cost dispute resolution process if they have a problem with their commercial tenancy.

We are also advocating to the WA government about their commercial tenancy laws that are currently under review. We have made a submission similar to that in NSW, that gyms, fitness centres, yoga, barre, Pilates, Tai Chi and dance studios should be better protected under the law for their commercial leases. We will keep you updated about the outcome.

VET Reform

 As part of the Vocational Education and Training sector reform that commenced in 2022, Sport, Fitness and Recreation was previously flagged to be placed in an alternative industry services cluster (alongside florists and funeral services). After consultation with the Skills Council, AUSactive is pleased with the result where we are now recognised in a cluster alongside the Health and Human Services sectors (which includes Aged and Disability Services), and which aligns our interests with our preventative health agenda. AUSactive is a foundation member of HumanAbility (who have been appointed to manage the cluster) and this will enhance our ability to table industry trends and potential changes in the future as the peak industry body.


If you would like to get in contact with With AUSactive's Policy and Advocacy Officer, Mariana Ivantsoff, please email: [email protected] 

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