Page 4048 - Week 09 - Thursday, 26 August 2010

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childcare providers to relocate to Flynn and to have a small expansion. We are currently providing support to another childcare provider in the Belconnen region—Baringa—so that they can increase, particularly targeted to the baby section. That shows that we are active and engaged and looking to provide support.

MRS DUNNE: A supplementary question, Mr Speaker?

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mrs Dunne.

MRS DUNNE: Minister, I ask you again: what policies do you have in place to address the cost stress on low income families as they face higher childcare fees after 2012?

MS BURCH: The childcare fees, by Access Economics, are $2.75 per week in 2012. That is completely at opposite ends to the fanciful nonsense that Mrs Dunne comes in here with. Again, it is just scaremongering that she is bringing in.

Mrs Dunne: On a point of order, my question was: what policies does the minister have in place to address the effect on low income earners? I do not need another reference to the Access Economics report. I asked a specific question about policies in relation to low income earners.

Mr Hargreaves: On a point of order, Mrs Dunne has not referred to any existing standing order that requires a minister to answer the question, to the letter, in the way she wants it. There is no standing order which requires this.

MR SPEAKER: On the point of order, let us come to the question, thank you, minister.

MS BURCH: Thank you. We have a number of things that we are doing to support the childcare sector and I have outlined some of them. In regard to providing quality, in supporting the training opportunities we have put in place a professional support coordinator that is working with services and, indeed, is facilitating the training which is required so that by 2014 all workers will have a VET certificate III level or be working towards it. This government, across DET and others, have increased access to CIT for training. All of these things support the maintenance of the services being provided which, in turn, have an effect on the cost of childcare.

Children—kinship carer support program

MRS DUNNE: My question is to the Minister for Children and Young People. Minister, in relation to the request for tender for the kinship carer support program 2010-13, I note from your 17 August release that no contracts have been awarded for two of the components of that tender. Those components were category B—services targeted to the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and category C—education, awareness and support programs for kinship carers. In your media release, you stated that “the government was now looking at the best way to fill the other components of the tender as soon as possible”. Minister, how many tenders were received in response to the request for tender that addressed these specific categories or the tender as a whole?

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