Shaping a Web for Inclusion, by Andrew J. Dunn
Early Successes Anecdotally
A number of PASA members are currently employed on attachment with interstate law enforcement agencies and, notwithstanding the fact that they receive news and hardcopy publications by mail, at times feel somewhat information starved. PASAweb has already been used by PASA members currently living and working interstate. The almost instant electronic publication of the PASA newsletters and other material on PASAweb provides a link with PASA that defies geography.
PASAweb provides a much sought after and, reportedly, necessary link for our interstate members. A PASA member currently living and working in Sydney, New South Wales advised by email "...it is great to be able to get into the Net and update information from the PASA while seconded interstate. ...". The publishers of PASAweb had foreseen the benefits for country based members and were surprised and extremely pleased with the spin off that saw PASA members working interstate benefit from the presence of PASAweb.
Overseas contacts were always envisaged as a result of PASAweb and World Wide Web interaction perhaps not quite as rapidly as it was achieved though. Within three months of PASAweb's existence the Secretary of PASA took a study trip to the United States organized entirely by using email to "meet" with his overseas counterparts and arrange face to face meetings and the World Wide Web to visit his host organizations in the US. Thus, the Internet has provided a very cost effective means of communications with our overseas counterparts.
Industrial legislation worldwide is becoming more similar with every change in government and legislative amendment. The US system of "collective bargaining" is very similar to the "enterprise bargaining" system that is now challenging Australian unions. Contact with overseas organizations has become almost essential particularly if we are all to avoid reinventing the wheel.