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Media Release by The Hon Mal Brough MP

ALP’s 600+ waiting lists versus one hotline

The re-announcement today by the Australian Labor Party of council-run child care waiting lists is nothing but smoke and mirrors.

Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, Mal Brough, today said the policy was flawed the first time it was announced and is still flawed today.

"What we have today from the Shadow Minister is nothing but a rehash and a still un-costed rehash at that," Mr Brough said.

"First and foremost, this is not a single list as Ms Macklin will try and tell you – it is each council holding a list which means well over 600 separate lists.

"It will mean information is duplicated across local government jurisdictions and quickly out-of-date – no help for parents.

"The Australian Government already has in place a single contact point for parents via the 1800 Child Care Access Hotline where parents can ring in and find vacancies for the service they want, in the area they want.

"We agree with comments expressed by the Community Child Care Association who have said this could take away parents’ choice – the ALP plan limits parents’ choices.

"With waiting lists controlled by individual councils, many of which are actually competing child care providers in local markets, parents will not be given an independent choice.

"Councils, who will be funded to co-ordinate lists will be the winners, not parents or other child care providers."

For further information call the Child Care Access Hotline between 8am to 9pm, Monday to Friday on 1800 670 305 (freecall).