The Association of Professional Engineers Australia (APEA) was invited to the final Community Cabinet for 2018 held in Ellenbrook, Western Australia.
The Community Cabinet meetings are a series open, modern and community focussed events designed to encourage greater community engagement and an opportunity to directly voice issues that matter to the community.
Held between November 18th- 19th, the event ended in the Premier, Mark McGowan and Cabinet Ministers participating in a series of events including a breakfast with local business representatives, a Cabinet meeting and breakfast with local non-for-profit representatives.
Represented by Dr Wen Chen, the Community Cabinet was an opportunity to discuss lifting the standing of engineering through Engineering A Better Future.
APEA’s presence was quite fitting as one of the meeting topics was the McGowan Government’s plan for the much needed Ellenbrook Rail. The Morley-Ellenbrook line will serve Perth’s north-east suburbs and is currently undergoing route option analysis including preliminary investigations, planning and concept design – all processes requiring engineering expertise.
Dr Chen had the opportunity to speak with Premier, Mark McGowan. Dr Chen introduced the Premier to the Engineering A Better Future Campaign. This discussion was centred around engineer registration and the chief engineer which are the government and workplace (respectively) reforms that we are driving through the campaign.
Following his talk with the Premier, Dr Chen spoke to the Minister of Transport, Planning and Lands, Rita Saffioti, who confirmed her support for engineer registration legislation and establishing a Chief Engineer role in the WA Government. Given her portfolio, Ms Saffioti’s support for the registration and a Chief Engineer will ensure governments such as projects are delivered safely, on time and on budget.
The discussion with Ms Saffioti was a productive one with APEA, WA due to meet with the Minister early in the new year to discuss the Engineering A Better Future in detail.
Finally, Dr Chen spoke to Mr Francis (Fran) Logan, Minister for Emergency Services and Corrective Services, who reaffirmed his support for engineer registration and commended the Engineering A Better Future Campaign.
APEA would like to thank Dr Chen for attending and discussing our campaign with the WA Cabinet ministers. This is an important first step to introducing the campaign to WA Parliament and a step to affecting change and giving engineers a stronger voice in the state.
Much like governments in Victoria, NSW and ACT, we are looking forward to working with the WA Parliament to introduce the Engineering A Better Future reforms and lift the standing of the profession.