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Thursday, 5 April 2001
Page: 26547


Mr SWAN (11:43 AM) —We will consider that measure the Minister for Community Services has just spoken about. For my part, I would like to reiterate that Labor are supportive of measures that encourage both parents to play a part in the upbringing of their children. There are certainly good arguments to provide additional financial assistance to encourage this. But we have a problem with the shared care measure in that it delivers benefits to the non-resident parent at the expense of the other parent. This has been the basis of our discussion. So we were prepared to support the lower formula percentages on the condition that the government passed a simple amendment to social security law. This amendment would have ensured that children were protected from any reduction in child support from the lower percentages by improving family payments. I would like to continue to discuss those matters with the government, and I hope that we can reach a satisfactory result in the interests of resident and non-resident parents.

Question resolved in the affirmative.