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Budget 2008: Labor's broken promise to Defence families.

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The Hon Bob Baldwin MP Federal Member for Paterson Shadow Minister for Defence Science, Personnel and Assisting Shadow Minister for Defence

14 May 2008


Labor claims to have put Defence families front and centre this year but has failed to deliver a key promise on health services in last night’s Budget, Shadow Minister for Defence Science, Personnel and Assisting Shadow Minister for Defence Bob Baldwin said.

“Before the election Defence families were promised a $33.1 million investment for the establishment of 12 Defence Family Health Care Clinics to provide free health care for ADF dependent spouses and children but last night’s Budget revealed this was a promise Labor never intended to keep.

“Instead of these 12 clinics which came with a carrot of more if they were successful, last night’s Budget revealed there will be no clinics. Only $12.2 million will be spent over four years to trial the provision of basic medical and dental services - and only in five locations.

“To add insult to injury this half hearted delivery comes with a cap of $300 a year per dependent on dental.

“Defence Minister Joel Fitzgibbon specifically promised that RAAF Amberley would be one of the first defence bases to benefit from proposed Defence Family Health Care Clinics, but no mention of Amberley was made in the Budget announcement.

“Coincidentally, of the five locations to be named in the Budget to receive the trial of the service, bases in Mr Fitzgibbon’s electorate of Hunter and Minister for Defence Science and Personnel Warren Snowden’s electorate of Lingiari were both named.”

Bob Baldwin - 0419 694 620

Electorate: PO Box 156 Raymond Terrace NSW 2324, 35 Sturgeon Street Raymond Terrace. Phone (02) 4983 1330 Canberra: Parliament House Canberra ACT 2600 Phone (02) 6277 4200