Strong response for mobile services bus
Help on wheels: Manager Suzanne Sanders and Mobile Service Centre driver Ian Cleghorn.PERSONNEL were kept busy last Thursday when a mobile government service centre on wheels stopped in Collie for the day.
The Australian Government Mobile Service Centre is one of two vans in Australia that travel to rural communities that are more than 50 kilometres from major service centres.
The service centre, which offered face-to-face assistance for Centrelink, Medicare, Australian Hearing and Child Support queries, supported existing online services and those available through agencies, according to manager Suzanne Sanders.
So busy was the van that a shade sail was set up outside to protect those in the queue from the sun.
The van contained a line of mini-offices and was staffed by a manager, driver, social worker and two other support staff.
The van, known as Kangaroo Paw, was one of two Australian government mobile service centres. The other is known as Desert Pea.
“It actually used to be a drought bus,” Ms Sanders said.
“The centres can be called in to provide emergency on-the-ground support in the event of bushfires and floods.”
In a significant logistical exercise, the mobile government service centre had even been ferried to Tasmania.
“It has its own generator, which is particularly useful so it can sustain itself without draining a town’s resources during an emergency situation,” Ms Sanders said.
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