Sector Policy & Campaigns

The CBAA strives to work with all levels of government to advocate for policies and programs to ensure a continuing vibrant, creative, culturally diverse and sustainable community broadcasting sector.

The CBAA plays a strong policy development role which is guided by the following principles:
  1. Put evidence first: The CBAA collects and evaluates evidence before undertaking priority setting and decision making, ensuring that all policy and advocacy work is built from a strong evidence base. The CBAA takes a pluralistic approach to research gathering, using quantitative and qualitative approaches to form a robust evidence base for policies. 
  2. Consult effectively: The CBAA values the expertise and experience of members and sector leaders by undertaking targeted and effective consultation to assist in policy and advocacy work. The CBAA recognises the importance of consultation when developing ideas, in decision making and in communicating results.
  3. Be proactive: The CBAA commits to leading discussions, policy development and advocating for change that will develop the sector. 
  4. Build coalitions: The CBAA forms relationships with the broadcasting, voluntary and commercial sectors to advance the interests of members. 
  5. Evaluate our work: The CBAA quantifies the impact of policy and advocacy work and uses findings to constantly improve. Evaluation helps the CBAA to be accountable to members, funders and the wider sector. 
  6. Promote the values of the sector through positive initiatives: Community broadcasting is a success story. While some situations will require the CBAA to frame issues as a crisis, funding and policy initiatives will, whenever possible, promote the success of the sector and the value of investing in community broadcasting initiatives.

The following reflects this ongoing work.

Spectrum Review

The CBAA made a submission to the Department of Communications Spectrum Review consultation paper. The consultation paper was part of a review of spectrum policy arrangements first announced by the Minister for Communications in May 2014, and explores proposals intended to maximise the economic and social return from spectrum.

2013 Election Campaign - Commit to Community Broadcasting

The 2013 election was an opportunity to tell politicians about the importance of community broadcasting. The CBAA coordinated a campaign as part of the 2013 election calling for $5 million in additional funding for community broadcasting.

The CBAA  worked with sector representative organisations with support from the Community Broadcasting Foundation to create the Commit to Community Broadcasting brochure, available here.

Listeners and supporters were able to let local candidates know that community radio is important to them by going to The website also includes station stories and details about the campaign.

Further information is available here.

ACMA Contemporary Community Safeguards Inquiry

The ACMA has launched the Contemporary community safeguards inquiry issues paper to establish the core principles that should guide the broadcasting industry’s code development process. The inquiry covers many issues addressed in the Community Radio Broadcasting Codes of Practice including decency, fairness, accuracy and complaints handling. The CBAA has prepared a response to the issues paper addressing the core principles that are relevant to community broadcasters.
The CBAA response to the ACMA Contemporary community safeguards inquiry issues paper is available here.

Commit to Community Radio Campaign

In the May Budget, 2012, a funding shortfall of $1.4 million per annum put the future of community digital radio services at risk.

In response, the Commit to Community Radio public awareness campaign was launched, encouraging listeners to call on the Federal Government to address the shortfall.

Some 43,000 community radio supporters made their voices heard, taking a range of actions which included sending tens of thousands of emails to key politicians. Supporters and stations highlighted the need for the government to address the funding shortfall for the benefit of communities right across the country, arguing that the community broadcasting sector deserved affordable access to digital radio broadcasting alongside the national and commercial broadcasting sectors.

In June 2013, the Federal Government addressed the shortfall by providing the additional $6 million required for the 2013/2016 period to maintain all current community digital radio services.

Read the victory announcement – Breaking news: Government makes good on digital funding.

Convergence Review

The Australian Government announced its intention to conduct a Convergence Review in 2011 in response to ongoing trends in technology that are reshaping the media landscape.

The Convergence Review is an independent review established by the Australian Government to examine the policy and regulatory frameworks that apply to the converged media and communications landscape in Australia.

The CBAA Response to the Convergence Review - Interim Report is available here.

The CBAA Submission to the Convergence Review Framing Paper is available here.

Community Broadcasting 'Vision 2015' Submission to Minister Conroy

A five year plan to renew Australia’s Community Broadcasting sector and create the world’s most innovative, accessible community media.

Community Broadcasting Listener Surveys

The Community Radio National Listener Survey commissioned biennially by the community broadcast sector, and conducted by McNair Ingenuity Research, is a survey of the community radio listening habits of Australians.

Revised B66 Form

Application for renewal of a Community Radio Broadcasting Licence

Digital Radio

In October 2005 the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts, Hon Senator Helen Coonan, announced a framework for digital radio broadcasting in Australia. The first stage applied to metropolitan-wide broadcasting services in capital cities. For more information on digital community radio, head here.

HRSCCITA Inquiry Into Community Broadcasting

In 2006 the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Communications, Information Technology and the Arts (HRSCCITA) held an Inquiry Into Community Broadcasting.

Senate Inquiry into Simulcasting

On 21 March 2013 the Senate referred the following matter to the Senate Standing Committees on Environment and Communications for inquiry and report - the effectiveness of current regulatory arrangements in dealing with the simultaneous transmission of radio programs using the broadcasting services bands and the Internet ('simulcast').


You can also download documents & speeches on issues relevant to the sector below: