ANTHONY ALBANESE, PRIME MINISTER: I want to thank KU here in Queanbeyan for having us in their early learning centre today. They are a great organisation, my own son went to KU at Erskinville in his younger years. And he did that because we as parents, myself and Carmel, wanted to make sure that Nathan learnt the skills, the social skills, and the learning that comes from centres just like this. Child care isn't some welfare issue. Child care is something that's about assisting young people to grow and be the best that they can. We know that in the first five years, over 90 per cent of brain development occurs. And we know also that this is economic reform. It's about improving women's workforce participation. It's about productivity as well in the workplace. It's about the retirement incomes of women. This is an important economic reform. And in one hundred days from today, cheaper child care begins. It's the first commitment that I made in that era when Opposition Leaders actually had policies and made announcements in Budget Replies. This was the first announcement that I made in my first Budget Reply and the most significant on-budget commitment that we made during the three years of Opposition. We put it in our first Budget because we regard this as such an important economic reform. There is a debate about productivity in this country, that is what this is about. And I do want to once again, thank the young ones, Elise and others who've welcomed us here and who've done drawing for us and to thank and once again praise the educators who are here. They do a fantastic job making sure that the adults of tomorrow are the best that they can be, and they show a great deal of care and compassion as well to the young people who are in their care.
JASON CLARE, MINISTER FOR EDUCATION: Thanks Boss, and Christine, and the whole team at KU, thanks so much for letting us share this morning with you. Thank you, Christine, for everything you've done for early education and care over decades and it's a privilege to be able to see you again today and to hang out with Elise and Alex. You saw the little children, the little legends that we spent this morning with. It reminds us that what we do is so important. That the changes that we make in Parliament House have an impact on children's life from the very beginning and can have an impact throughout their life. The first five years of a child's life are everything. Everything that they see, everything that they eat, every friend they meet, every book they read, every rabbit they draw, can affect the person that they become. KU is one of those organisations that makes that happen. But we all know how expensive early education and care is. And in one hundred days' time, cheaper child care will become a reality for more than a million Australian families. Today, there's new information out that shows that the cost of childcare went up by 49 per cent over the last decade under the former government. That's why this is important. If you're a family on a combined income of 120 grand and you've got one child in care for three days a week, this will cut your costs by $1,700 a year. That's real money and it will make a real difference for lots of families around the country. That's why, as the Prime Minister said, this was the first commitment that you made as Opposition Leader in a Budget Reply speech. It's why we campaigned for this right across the country over the last few years. It's why we passed legislation to make it happen last year. And I'm so proud that we are now on the cusp of making this happen, only one hundred days away from this becoming a reality for more than a million Australian families. It's good for families, it's good for children, and it's good for our economy.