Parliament – child care subsidy figures

Thursday, 31 May 2018

Yesterday there were some deeply concerning figures that came from the Minister for Education and Training—that is, just under 50 per cent of families have not registered for the new childcare subsidy, with only five weeks to go. What will happen to these families? They will lose important support for child care. Instead of actually taking responsibility, what we heard from the minister yesterday was that it was families’ fault. It was families’ fault that the system was changed. It was families’ fault that they hadn’t registered. It was families’ fault that they hadn’t communicated properly with the department.

It is time this government stops making excuses, stops blaming families and gets on with the job. We already know one in four families will be worse off as a result of this government’s changes, and no amount of squirming or fudging the facts is going to change that. We now know that so many more families will have out-of-pocket costs because this government has botched the transition. They’ve botched it, and, as a result, families will be worse off.

Why doesn’t the government start working with centres that are at the coalface? Why don’t they work with families? Instead they’ve paid for a slick advertising campaign that has not done the job. It’s time this government doesn’t keep blaming families for all its failures. On this side of the House we stand up for families, and it’s time the government does the same.

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