Luke Foley has pledged an extra $1.3 billion to build schools and TAFEs at Labor campaign launch

-->

Originally published: The Daily Telegraph, 2 March 2015.

By Andrew Clennell

Labor leader Luke Foley has pledged an extra $1.3 billion to build schools and TAFEs and promised every primary school will have its own childcare centre in his campaign launch this morning in Campbelltown.

As Labor looks to win back Campbelltown, which the Liberal Party holds by 6.8 per cent, Mr Foley also pledged $100 million for a paediatric surgery centre at Campbelltown Hospital.

Mr Foley said the election was a “referendum on electricity privatisation” and also promised a moratorium on coal seam gas.

“I announce today that under a Labor government, the policy of the state will be ... That every new school built must include childcare or before and after school care facilities on site,” Mr Foley said.

“I will not have our schools designed as if they are 19th century buildings, locked up from 3pm to 9am.

“I announce today that if we are elected, Labor will provide an additional $1.3 billion to improve schools and TAFE colleges.”

Mr Foley promised 200 specialist maths and science teachers in primary schools and to pump more money into TAFE.

He committed to nurse-led walk in centres at hospitals, a new public hospital at Maitland, ending co-payments for chemotherapy fees and “$100 million for a paediatric surgery centre at Campbelltown Hospital. The home of the great baby boom right here in Sydney’s southwest.”

Mr Foley, a cricket fan, compared himself to demon 19th century Australian fast bowler Fred Spofforth, who rolled England for less than the 85 they were chasing in a test match in 1882 creating “the ashes” in explaining what Labor could do at the March 28 state election.

“The Demon told his teammates at the final change of innings: “this thing can be done. And they did it. And an Australian legend was born.

“Friends in New South Wales, in this election, this thing can be done.”

Mr Foley’s slogan is “A new approach to NSW.”

The launch began with a welcome to Labor’s longest serving Prime Minister Bob Hawke to the room followed by the entrance of the state’s longest serving premier Bob Carr and the wife of the second longest serving premier, Neville Wran’s wife Jill, followed by the arrival of Federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten.

“Mike Baird is a polite fellow with a nice smile, there’s nothing personal between us,” Mr Foley said.

“But he’s a Liberal Premier, and he’s making choices that hurt — choices to cut, choices to sell — not because he has to but because that’s what he believes in.

Originally published as: Luke Foley has pledged an extra $1.3 billion to build schools and TAFEs at Labor campaign launch