April 23, 2015

SUPPORT FOR LOCAL LEARNER DRIVER PROGRAM SECURED

Young drivers in Ballarat will benefit following the announcement by the Andrews Labor Government of $16 million in funding to continue the L2P learner driver mentor program across Victoria.

Member for Wendouree, Sharon Knight, and Member for Buninyong, Geoff Howard, welcomed the funding, which will help disadvantaged young drivers in Ballarat and across the region get their licence.

The program targets young drivers that don’t have access to a car, with 28 young drivers in the Ballarat region currently enrolled in the program.

Labor’s funding allows the program to continue for a further four years after it was facing the Liberal’s axe.

L2P is a community-based program that recruits volunteers to provide supervised driving experience to learner drivers aged under 21 years who find it difficult to meet the mandated 120 hours of driving practice due to family, economic or other circumstances.

Learner drivers under 21 are required to record at least 120 hours of supervised driving before they can sit for their probationary license test.

However it is estimated that approximately 3,000 young people each year would be highly unlikely to access supervised driving experience without the L2P program.

The L2P program also allows young people to boost their driving skills for future employment and deters unlicensed driving.

L2P is funded by the TAC and delivered by VicRoads. United Way operates the program in Ballarat in partnership with local community groups, businesses and sponsors.

For more information about the local L2P program, visit: http://unitedwayballarat.org.au/our-work/l2p-learner-driver-mentor-program

Quotes attributable to Member for Wendouree, Sharon Knight

“While getting 120 hours of practice is possible for most young people, it can be a real challenge for others who don’t have access to a car or a supervisor.”

“Thanks to the efforts of local volunteers, young people in our community who may not have an available parent or guardian can get the experience they need to become safe drivers.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Buninyong, Geoff Howard

“L2P helps young people get the driving experience they need to get ready for the road by pairing learner drivers with an experienced mentor.”

“Gaining a licence can also build confidence and independence by enhancing mobility and opportunities for increased social connections.”