Labor in child hub pledge

L-R: Sunbury MP Josh Bull, McEwen MP Rob Mitchell, Shadow Minister for Health Catherine King, Sunbury Community Health chief executive Phill Ripper and Sunbury Community Health board chair Peter Donlon

By Jessica Micallef

A Sunbury child health hub could become a reality if a Labor government is elected at this month’s federal election.

Labor is promising to deliver $2.5 million to fund stage one of the project, which is expected to be located at Sunbury Community Health.

The proposed hub will bring together paediatric allied health professionals including speech and language pathology, audiology, paediatric occupational therapy and physiotherapy.

Sunbury Community Health chief executive Phill Ripper said the funding pledge was welcome given Sunbury’s growing population.

“Families are the best places for kids and supporting parents to be their child’s first educator – the most important educator is what we’re about,” he said.

“The idea of a hub and the capacity to build on that is really welcomed.

“We have been able to keep up with a fair bit of that growth … but as anyone who walks through this building knows, we are absolutely at breaking point and have been for quite some time.

“It’ll be a welcome relief for our staff and visitors but most importantly the children and families that use our service.”

McEwen MP Rob Mitchell was at Sunbury Community Health on Friday to announce the election pledge.

He said the child hub would be a boon for Sunbury families.

“This is going to be a big opportunity to expand, give more room … [and] to deal with the huge amount of growth that we have in this area,” he said.