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Media Release by Senator the Hon Amanda Vanstone

Child care – 36% more funding and 63% more places than Labor

Labor has got no legs to stand on when it talks about child care.

The simple fact is that Commonwealth funding for child care was more than $4.7 billion in last 4 years (1997-98 to 2000-01). This is over 36% more in real terms, than Labor’s last 4 years in office.

The total number of Commonwealth funded places across all services types has increased by around 193,500 or 63% since June 1996 – from 306,500 in 1996 to 500,034 in June 2001.

As to Outside School Hours Care, we have an outstanding record. We have increased the number of Commonwealth funded Outside School Hours Care places by a massive 221 per cent. When we were elected in 1996 there were 72,000 places and there are now 230,000.

Labor has raised the issue of access to vacation care places. In fact, there are around 80,000 Vacation Care places. This is more than the entire Outside School Hours Care places under Labor.

Around the country Outside School Hours Care places have increased by:

State Under Labor (1996) Under Coalition (2001) % increase in places under Coalition
NSW 24,092 61,963 157%
Vic 18,215 57,432 215%
Qld 13,587 57,872 325%
SA 6,076 23,167 281%
WA 5,488 15,349 180%
Tas 1,685 4,264 153%
NT 714 3,740 424%
ACT 1,989 6,724 238%
TOTAL 71,846 230,511 221%