MARSHALL CALLS ON GOVERNMENT TO KEEP ACTIVE KIDS VOUCHERS

MARSHALL CALLS ON GOVERNMENT TO KEEP ACTIVE KIDS VOUCHERS

Photo caption: Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall is calling on the State Government to continue funding for the popular and successful Active Kids $110 voucher program.

Friday, 12 May 2023

MEMBER for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall has today appealed to the new State Government not to axe, but continue to fund the popular and successful Active Kids program.

Mr Marshall put down a question on the Parliament’s Notice Paper to the Minister for Sport this week, pressuring him to state on the record whether his government would continue the popular program, which provides $100 vouchers (per child) for parents, guardians and carers of school-enrolled children to use towards sport and active recreation costs each year.

He said that since the voucher program commenced in 2018, 39,3332 vouchers had been claimed throughout the Northern Tablelands, worth a total of almost $4 million.

“These vouchers have been hugely popular across our region and allowed thousands of youngsters to enjoy their chosen organised sport or leisure activity and their families to save money,” Mr Marshall said.

“I cannot fathom why the new government is even considering axing this program, especially at a time when families are really feeling the pinch with the costs of almost everything rising so much at the moment.”

The government has announced recently the program is currently subject to its ‘Comprehensive Expenditure Review’, putting its continuation beyond this financial year in serious doubt.

“I’ve seen first-hand the difference these vouchers have made to local families and also local sporting codes, which has seen an increase in participation,” Mr Marshall said.

“This program is the largest grassroots sport funding initiative in Australia and we shouldn’t be turning our backs on initiatives which helps get youngsters outside and active – it is worthy of continued funding.

“Sport plays such an important role in social cohesion in our local communities and is an essential part of country life.”

Mr marshall said the government needed to come out and declare the program safe from any funding cuts to make sure children in the region could continue to have good access to sporting opportunities.

“I’ve had phone calls from a number of local families who’ve told me that if the Active Kids voucher is scrapped, they won’t be able to afford sport for all their kids anymore – it’s as simple as that,” he said.

“What has to be understood here is that playing sport out here in the bush is very different to the city – the distances are vast and the costs of participation are higher – which is why there has been such a strong take up of the program here.

“I’m calling on the government save Active Kids.”

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