Thank you, Mr Speaker
And I want to wish you and everyone a happy TAFE Day.
I come from generations of tradespeople: shipwrights and boilermakers, printers and fitters-and-turners.
So I find one of the great privileges of being a member of parliament is the opportunity to visit TAFE campuses around our nation.
My colleagues and I get to meet TAFE educators, passing on their knowledge, inspiring others.
We get to watch young Australians discovering what they can do and fall in love with a passion which they can take through their lives.
We get to see older workers re-training for a new opportunity, finding the confidence that comes from starting something new.
I’m proud that at the next election, there will be a very clear choice on TAFE:
Another three years of Liberal cuts to TAFE and apprenticeships.
Or a Labor Government backing public TAFE, all the way.
We will invest $100 million in a Rebuilding TAFE Fund to renovate campuses and workshops
We’ll hire more apprentices on Commonwealth projects, so one in every ten employees must be an apprentice
And we're going to waive upfront fees for 100,000 TAFE courses.
I don’t want us to be a nation that simply relies on importing skilled workers, when we can train our own.
Where a town has a TAFE, a community has hope in the future.
And when public TAFE is strong and properly funded: we'll have a high-skill workforce, earning good wages, we'll have an economy that can compete and succeed in Asia.
And above all, we'll have an Australia where no-one gets left behind.