Federal Communications Minister Michelle Rowland has promised a systematic program of media reform with the aim of ensuring all Australians have equitable access to media services and content, regardless of financial means or location.
The Minister’s reform agenda – outlined in a speech today – also seeks to ensure that Australians “have access to a vibrant and diverse range of news media, as well as relevant local media, where no one voice dominates political and social debates”.
This will be a challenge given that ownership of Australian media organisations is more concentrated than in most other countries, and given the scale of newsroom contractions and closures, especially since COVID.
Rowland said the Government wants to break the longstanding pattern whereby “media policy in this country has been ‘stuck in a rut’ of unambitious agendas and failed execution”. She wants to work “together with industry and consumers to achieve meaningful, lasting reform”.
Hopefully this will provide an opportunity for public health advocates to engage with the reform process, bearing in mind the importance of media policy as a determinant of health.
Setting the agenda
Join us to discuss media policy and more, at a webinar from 5pm AEDT on Tuesday, 15 November – ‘Health in All Policies and the Budget’.
The webinar aims to provide a platform for discussion about health in all policies in the wake of the Federal Budget as well as thinking ahead to next year’s Budget – and to examine related social, cultural and commercial determinants of health. It is a timely discussion given the Federal Government’s current consultation on “measuring what matters” for a Wellbeing Budget.
Croakey’s managing editor Alison Barrett will live tweet the discussions from @CroakeyNews, and we will also publish a report of the discussions. We encourage participants to tweet using #WellbeingBudget2022.
5pm AEDT: Melissa Sweet, Acknowledgement of Country and introductions
5.05pm AEDT: Dr Summer May Finlay, Yorta Yorta woman, moderator, Croakey contributing editor, Senior Lecturer Wollongong University: Setting the scene
5.10pm: Anna Draffin has been CEO of the Public Interest Journalism Initiative since 2019 and has overseen the production of many significant research publications about public interest journalism in Australia and related policy issues. Read more about PIJI. See recent news releases.
5.15pm: Associate Professor Kathryn Backholer at Deakin University is a National Heart Foundation Future Leader Fellow and Associate Director of the Global Obesity Centre (GLOBE), a World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Centre for Obesity Prevention. Kathryn leads a program of research focused on the social, commercial and cultural determinants of population health and is particularly interested in interdisciplinary solutions to complex public health problems, including the power of Big Tech.
5.20pm: Dr Joanne Flavel is an economist and public health researcher, and Research Fellow at Stretton Health Equity in the Stretton Institute at the University of Adelaide. Joanne is actively involved in the Public Health Association of Australia and the Australian Health Promotion Association. She received the PHAA Emerging Leader Award and the Health Promotion SIG Early Career Award for Research in 2022. Read more.
5.25pm: Scott Wilson is CEO of the Aboriginal Drug and Alcohol Council SA Aboriginal Corporation, and a member of numerous state and national committees and advisory bodies. Scott is a powerful advocate for law reform and action on the social determinants of health, including affordable housing and the importance of raising the age at which children can be detained. Read more.
Related articles at Croakey:
On the road to the South Australian election, politicians need to think beyond hospitals
Turning up for practice and research in drug and alcohol care
5.30pm: Professor Sotiris Vardoulakis is Professor of Global Environmental Health at ANU, and Director and ACT Hub Leader of the Healthy Environments And Lives (HEAL) Network, which aims to catalyse research, knowledge exchange and translation into policy and practice that will bring measurable improvements to our health, the Australian health system, and the environment. The network guest tweeted for @WePublicHealth last week, marking COP27 and their upcoming conference (follow #Heal2022). Read more.
5.35-5.50: Questions and discussion
5.50pm: Dr Summer May Finlay sums up discussions
5.58pm: Melissa Sweet wraps up formal proceedings – and invites participants to our end-of-year informal webinar to wrap up the year: 5pm on Thursday, 15 December.
See our archive of articles about the first Federal Budget of the Albanese Government