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NSW Government misleading families on child care.



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The Hon Warwick Smith MP

Minister for Family Services

Federal Member for Bass

 

Media Release

 

WS/98

1 June 1998

 

NSW GOVERNMENT MISLEADING FAMILIES ON CHILD CARE

 

Contrary to today’s media reports, the NSW Government is not creating 1900 “new” child car e places in tomorrow’s State Budget but rather is continuing its campaign of misleading, political propaganda to NSW families, according to Federal Family Services Minister, Warwick Smith.

 

“On 30 April this year, Minister Lo Po’ and I jointly announced these ‘new’ places, which provided for $11.5 million in Commonwealth contributions each year for a specific package to address the additional child care needs of NSW families.

 

The three new proposals were:

* Childcare Assistance for 998 new centre-based car e - particularly for children and babies under three years old

* Childcare Assistance and Commonwealth Disadvantaged Area Subsidy for 500 new centre-based places in rural and remote areas

* Childcare Assistance to care for school aged children during the school holidays -866 new places in areas of high need and 15,614 current places to be covered

 

“The claims in today's press that the NSW Government will be announcing expansion of childcare places in its budget are completely misleading”, Mr Smith said.

 

“I nstead, these places are reannouncements of Commonwealth/State cost shared places agreed in 1995 but not yet delivered due to the NSW Governments reluctance to progress with promises made to families at that time.

 

The Commonwealth funding has been available since 1995 for these places but could not be made available to N SW families until now because of a lack of contributions by the NSW Government.

 

“NSW families would be better served if its State Government spent money on NSW child care services instead of duplicating existing Government information services.

 

“The Commonwealth established the Child Care Access Hotline last year to assist families. Since November it has provided information to over 30,000 parents who called to find out about child care services near their homes”, Mr Smith said.

 

Contact: Margaret Sutherland (02) 6277 7240

 

CHILD CARE ACCESS HOTLINE: 1800 670 305

 

 

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