House debates

Monday, 18 February 2019

Constituency Statements

Isaacs Electorate: Kingston Toy Library

10:41 am

Photo of Mark DreyfusMark Dreyfus (Isaacs, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Attorney General) Share this | | Hansard source

The Kingston Toy Library is a fantastic local service in my community of Isaacs. Located in Lewis Street, Mordialloc, it provides an essential service to local mums and dads, lending out toys to local children. I was very excited to recently join the Kingston Toy Library president, Emma Bryant, and secretary, Emily Corda, at the library to announce that a federal Labor government will invest $50,000 in the toy library to renovate it and allow it to buy more toys for our community. This announcement was followed just a few weeks later by Labor's broader policy to invest $6.1 million in play groups and toy libraries around Australia to ensure they have the space and resources they need to provide services to local communities.

It's essential that education starts at a young age. Giving toy libraries the ability to serve a larger and wider community means that every child is able to access a wide range of toys to enjoy and aid their development. My dream is an Australia that values all of its children, one that ensures that public institutions, like toy libraries and, later, public schools, have every resource they need to ensure that every child has every opportunity to become what they want to be. Education is at the heart of Labor politics and at the heart of my personal political beliefs. Every aspect of Australian life—our economy, our culture and our workforce—is affected by the ability of every child to have a quality education.

I thank Emma and Emily for their hospitality during my visit, and I thank the Kingston Toy Library coordinator, Catherine, who welcomed me on my first visit late last year. Local parents understand the value of education and the value of traditional libraries, toy libraries and play groups. I understand their value too. I'm so pleased that a Labor government will deliver for toy libraries all across Australia and in the great community of Isaacs. A good start in life matters. To the parents of Isaacs I say, 'I'm on your side.'