The Coalition is relieved to see the Albanese Labor Government’s delayed announcement of an additional year of funding to Hummingbird House, but they must apologise for the ongoing uncertainty they have created.
Hummingbird House provides palliative care for sick and dying children up to the aged of 21, supporting over 145 families a year in Queensland who are facing the nightmare of losing a child.
The Coalition has proudly provided ongoing funding for this essential organisation since 2015.
Funding from the Federal Government has been critical to the sustainability and growth of Hummingbird House, allowing them to provide much-needed care and support to Queensland families going through an incredibly difficult experience.
It was extremely disappointing to see funding for Hummingbird House not included in Labor’s recent Budget, and we condemn the Government for the stress and uncertainty this has caused this organisation and the families it supports.
Now, thanks to the advocacy and campaigning by local Federal MP, the Hon Luke Howarth and the Coalition team, the Government has made a half-hearted announcement at the eleventh hour and committed to fund only one more year.
This announcement, whilst welcome, only extends the funding uncertainty being experienced by Hummingbird House, who deserves to be able to plan for their future sustainability and growth.
The Labor Government must apologise for causing this uncertainty for the future of this essential service, and they must commit to securing ongoing funding for Hummingbird House beyond the coming year.
“As Queensland’s only children’s hospice, we understand that Hummingbird House delivers essential support to Queensland families who are going through the traumatic experience of losing a child,” Shadow Minister for Health and Aged Care, Senator the Hon Anne Ruston said.
“It is inconceivable why the Government chose to place this provider in a state of complete uncertainty by not providing funding in the Budget, only to then turn around and commit to a one-year payment.
“I am pleased that they have responded to pressure from the Coalition, especially my colleague Luke Howarth MP, and the community by making this announcement, but one year of funding is simply not enough,” Senator Ruston said.
Petrie MP Luke Howarth said “The families of Hummingbird House are heroes and should not have to continually exhaust themselves to secure much needed care for their children.
“I am honoured to be able to fight for them, and the Coalition team will continue to lead from opposition to ensure the children and families of Queensland are given the security and care they deserve, not just for another year but for as long as they need it.”