Looking Forward

It’s fitting that the year we celebrated 50 years of strata has turned out to be something of a watershed for our sector.

The dictionary will tell you a watershed means the boundary between two river catchment systems or, more generically, the dividing line between two phases or conditions. What we know is that we entered 2011 with a a state-based representa-tive structure with multiple brands and no clear identity or common purpose.

By the end of the year we are united under one banner after an overwhelmingly positive endorsement by members of the transition to Strata Community Australia.

Our membership is becoming more inclusive with several states actively broadening board representation and their structures to more closely mirror the industry’s current stage of development as well to engage with owners and committees. Perhaps more than most industry or sector bodies, we have defined ourselves in terms of our customer base more than who we are or what we do.

Nowhere was this more on show than in our advocacy on behalf of strata owners in the north of Australia over the impact of crippling rises in insurance premiums. We ensured a major federal inquiry originally set up to look at the Brisbane region floods was widened and worked hard with them to iden-tify a solution. A House of Rep-resentatives committee will take evidence from strata owners and other stakeholders early in 2012 and we are hopeful of more positive news soon.

Looking ahead, a national accreditation working group is well down the path of defining a career pathway that will support professional development and help consumers find the skills and services they need. Support-ing this, an expanded strata education program will be progressively rolled out leveraging the skills and knowledge base across the states and territories. Our national magazine, which six months ago was only available in NSW, and our new web presence will continue to develop as key platforms for member communication and stakeholder engagement.

These themes will come to-gether at our first national SCA convention at Adelaide on May 27-29 2012. If you have not already blocked out these dates in your diary, please do so. Having passed through the watershed year of 2011, that will be the next milestone in the unfolding story of the strata sector’s development and it is important that as many members as possible are with us on that next stage.

James Freestun
Strata Community Australia


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