19 October 2023

Sarbjeet Kaur is a generous-hearted young woman who simply wants to give back to her community. That's why she grasped fee-free TAFE with both hands, completing an aged-care course at Gordon TAFE, in my electorate. She now works in my electorate of Corangamite.

Sarbjeet told me fee-free TAFE helped her to get a job that she truly cares about. She said, 'I really enjoy this job. Sometimes I feel like crying when I see the residents. We are here for them. We care for them. We try to give everything for them.' These words are heartfelt. They exemplify the compassion and care that we want to see in every person who cares for our older Australians.

It's not an easy job, and the wages have been too low for too long. The Albanese government recognise this and its impact on the workforce, and that's why our government and the minister for aged care have acted, with a significant 15 per cent wage increase for aged-care workers.

We're also boosting fee-free TAFE with 300,000 additional places for 2024. This means 300,000 more opportunities for generous, caring and determined Australians like Sarbjeet. In closing, I urge everyone in my electorate to follow Sarbjeet's lead. It's time to grasp fee-free TAFE with both hands and open the door to more fulfilling, rewarding, better paid jobs.