90 Second Statement – childcare
Last week the Assistant Minister for Education, Susan Ley, visited my electorate. The visit was very well received. We attended the Acorn Child Care Centre, which is owned by a local diabetic specialist, Dr Martin Strahan. Dr Strahan has a very strong interest in the diets of children, in particular the effect of nuts and nut oil products and how that may affect children in later life. This is one of the very few childcare centres in the region which has a completely vegetarian diet which includes nuts and nut oil. I congratulate Dr Strahan on taking that strong stance. It certainly seems to be effective and is working incredibly well. The centre also has a local music program. I would like to thank Gina and Janet for the great warm reception they gave me and the assistant minister when we toured the centre.
While in Bundaberg, Assistant Minister Ley ran a round table for local childcare providers. The message from those childcare providers was constant and it was quite simple. They are absolutely drowning in red and green tape. They are absolutely drowning in changes to regulation over the last six years. The thing they are absolutely crying out for—and crying out for constantly—is stability.
Stability is something this government will provide. Assistant Minister Ley was across her brief—she could answer every question that was asked. Certainly they were very happy with the outcome. It is exceptionally important that, as a government, we do what we said we would do and that we get out of the way and let these people get on with what it is they are best at doing. (Time expired)