Television Interview with David Koch – Sunrise – Tuesday 10 May 2022

TUESDAY, 10 MAY 2022

SUBJECTS: Labor’s $2.2 billion boost to the City Suburban Rail Loop; Labor’s plan to deal with the aged care crisis.
DAVID KOCH, HOST: Anthony Albanese is ramping up his election campaign blitz in Melbourne today, the Labor leader set to announce a $2.2 billion boost to the City Suburban Rail Loop. It’s one of the biggest spending pledges made during this election. For more, I’m joined by a Labor’s Spokesperson Jason Clare. Jason Clare, it’s almost like something out of that Utopia series. It’s an election campaign, bring in the fast rail or the new rail loop. What are you going to do?

JASON CLARE, LABOR CAMPAIGN SPOKESPERSON: Public transport makes cities work better. 

KOCH: Yep. 

CLARE: There’s been a business case done by the Victorian Government, it says it will have a $58 billion benefit for the city. We know it here in Sydney, if you build public transport, it helps people to get to work quicker, it helps you to get around the city, just makes a lot of sense. Compare and contrast that to what this Government’s done with imaginary car parks at railway stations that don’t exist. We’ve seen plenty of rorts like that. This is about building railway stations and building rail lines.  

KOCH: Okay. Good idea. Let’s move on to aged care. Workers in two states walking off the job today, demanding better conditions. I noticed the National Seniors Association has come out supporting the aged care workers. What’s Labor going to do in this area to fix it? 

CLARE: Can you think of a worker in Australia that’s doing a job that’s more important and that’s paid less in Australia at the moment, than people in aged care? You know, the stories in the papers today tell stories of people doing double shifts, being paid bugger all, and that’s part of the problem here. We need to make sure our aged care workers are paid better, otherwise they’re going to continue to leave. If you’re watching the program today, and you’ve got mum and dad on the verge of going into aged care, you’d be terrified at the moment with all the stories about maggots in wounds, or people being left in soiled clothes or basically being starved to death. I had someone contact my office last month, her mum fell out of a chair at aged care, she had a stroke, there was no one there in the room and so she was left to suffer, taken to hospital the next day and she died there. It seriously is a crisis. But we can fix it, you just need a government that’s determined to do something about it. 

KOCH: How do you fix it? Because everyone has older parents, and everyone has experienced this. But then there’s the cost of aged care. Higher staffing levels, higher wages then get passed on to the families to pay for aged care. So how do you balance that out?

CLARE: It’s not rocket science though. We’ve got a Royal Commission report. It was titled ‘Neglect’. It said this is the problem and these are the things you need to do to fix it. 

KOCH: Which come with a cost. 

CLARE: Yeah, that’s right. You know, it’s not free. But do we want to live in a society where we let our older Australians die in neglect? And that’s what’s happening at the moment. I suspect lots of people are keeping family at home because they’re terrified at what will happen to them if they go there. And my grandparents went through this, and you know, I think about it with my own mum and dad as they get older. But you can fix it. There was a time where there were nurses in nursing homes. We can have that again can’t we?

KOCH: Yep, absolutely and we should, totally agree. Jason Clare thanks for joining us.

CLARE: Good on you.