Hunter communities reject Premier’s privatisation push

Media release: 17 February 2015

The Greens stood alongside hundreds of Hunter residents today to say no to privatisation and yes to the public provision of high quality affordable services and infrastructure.

Greens NSW MP John Kaye, who spoke at today’s rally at Hamilton TAFE on behalf of the Greens, said: “Today the community has sent the Premier Mike Baird the strongest possible message.

John with Greens candidates for Charlestown and Swansea at today's rally

John with Greens candidates for Charlestown and Swansea at today’s rally

“Since their election four years ago the NSW Liberals and Nationals have systematically undermined the public provision and ownership of essential services for the community.

“They are so determined to hand the Newcastle rail line over to private developers, they are prepared to ignore their own department’s advice. They want to spend more of taxpayers money on an inferior light rail option to satisfy the big end of town.

“The NSW Liberals and Nationals are abandoning their responsibilities to the most vulnerable people in our community with their privatisation of Ageing Disability and Homecare services.

“Maitland is at risk of being yet another victim of the Baird government’s dangerous experiment with the privately owned and operated public hospital model. Patient care will suffer if this is not stopped.

“It is hard to imagine that the Hunter’s TAFE colleges can survive another four years under the NSW Liberals and Nationals.

“Under its so-called ‘Smart and Skilled’ training market the government is handing out hundreds of millions of dollars to corporate training providers.

“At the same time Hunter TAFE Institute has seen its budget slashed, with over a hundred full time jobs lost, courses reduced and fees increased to unaffordable levels.

“No public money should go to for-profit training providers.

“Across the state the Liberals and Nationals are holding NSW voters to ransom with their infrastructure promises dependent on their proposed electricity privatisation.

“Today it is Newcastle’s turn to have the long con of the NSW Liberals and Nationals foisted upon them.

“Hunter voters will not be fooled by the Premier’s shiny new things.

“Electricity privatisation is bad for the economy, bad for jobs, bad for the environment and bad for household power bills.

“The Liberals and Nationals are out of touch with the feelings of the Hunter community.

“Gladys Berejiklian says her party is moving on from ICAC.

“If the NSW Liberals and Nationals were really moving on and really listening to the people of the Hunter today, they would learn from the lessons of their Queensland and Victorian colleagues and abandon their public assets privatisation agenda,” said Dr Kaye.

For more information: John Kaye 0407 195 455

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