Boost To Reduce Rural Barriers

NSW Farmers has thanked the Minns Government for providing fresh funding to break down rural barriers as it announced the first $35 million in funding from the Regional Development Trust today.

Funds to upgrade rural and remote airstrips and improve western NSW childcare services featured among the $35 million package announced by the NSW Government today, as part of its $350 million Regional Development Trust initiative to boost resilience across regional NSW.

NSW Farmers Western Division Council Chair Gerard Glover said the announcement had come as welcome news to farmers across the state and particularly in western NSW, where upgrades to rural and remote airstrips were much needed.

“In many remote and isolated pockets in western NSW, farmers and families are often hundreds of kilometres from help – and so we need our rural and remote airstrips to be up to scratch to ensure we can access urgent medical care when we need it,” Mr Glover said.

“These airstrip upgrades are a real win for rural and remote NSW, as they will enable services such as the Royal Flying Doctor Service to access these communities safely and quickly – no doubt saving lives and boosting the quality of healthcare our communities receive.”

Mr Glover said funding committed as part of the announcement to establish and upgrade long day care services in Broken Hill, Bourke and Cobar will provide a boost to attract and retain young farming families, where early childhood and education care is often limited.

“Whether you live in Cobar or in Canberra, all families deserve to have access to early childhood and education care when and where they need it,” Mr Glover said.

“$10 million in funding to increase access to these services across parts of rural NSW will go a long way to ensuring parents can return to work when they need to, while being confident their children are being cared for safely.

“Accessing critical services such as childcare or healthcare in rural and regional NSW shouldn’t be this hard – so a boost to help overcome these barriers has been warmly welcomed by us all.”

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