Here are some facts particularly for the member for Hinkler, the previous speaker. The new childcare package of the Turnbull government—of which he is a part—will see nearly 300,000 families across Australia worse off, and this includes 2,225 families in my electorate of Wills. There are many people in my electorate and across Australia who are already struggling with cost of living pressures. This policy will see their problems persist and deepen. The strain households budgets are already under will only increase. It should be noted that the 176,000 families who are worse off fall into the lowest two combined family income brackets. Under this proposal these vulnerable families will have to adhere to a complex system for childcare subsidies in which a fortnightly period of work will be used to determine the financial relief provided.
What does this mean for people who do casual work or seasonal work? I don’t think the government particularly cares. The policy not only is arbitrary and inflexible but also discriminates against large swathes of the working population. With increased casualisation a feature of the jobs market, it defies logic that the Liberals have designed policy around a category of employment that they are fast making a relic of the past. This government’s dedication to attacking average Australians with tax increases and removing their penalty rates and their childcare subsidies, putting those families under pressure, is unbelievable. The Prime Minister’s reward to his mates in the big end of town with $65 billion in tax cuts for big business is at the expense of ordinary Australians struggling to make ends meet.