Tragic TAFE cuts – The people have spoken!

Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews has presented more than 28,000 signed petitions to State Parliament in Ballarat calling on the Baillieu Government to reverse its callous budget cuts to TAFE, State Member for Monbulk, James Merlino said today.

“This is by far the biggest petition I have seen tabled in Parliament in my entire 10 years as the Member for Monbulk – I have collected over 2,789 signatures on the ‘Save Swinburne Lilydale petition within my own electorate of Monbulk’

‘At the same time Daniel Andrews tabled a massive 25,242 petition to save TAFE. So a total today of 28,031, with thousands more to come.’

Many Monbulk residents have signed the petition sending a clear message to Mr Baillieu that Victorians are outraged at the callous cuts and want the decision reversed.

“Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews has led the fight against these nasty Baillieu Government TAFE cuts and I welcome the tabling of these petitions as State Parliament sits in regional Victoria,” Mr Merlino said.

 “The local community has banded together to send the message to Ted Baillieu that these savage cuts are taking education and training in Victoria backwards.

“The Baillieu Government has ripped $290 million out of Victoria’s TAFE system. As a result, Swinburne Lilydale, both TAFE and University, will close next year leaving local students with nowhere to go.

“The Baillieu Government TAFE cuts will severely impact residents in the Monbulk electorate in trying to obtain training or re-skilling given the current economic climate.

“Victoria is in the midst of a jobs crisis because of the Baillieu Government’s failure to invest in our state and in particular here in the Monbulk Electorate.

“Mr Baillieu’s cuts will add more people to the unemployment queue while at the same  time limiting people’s opportunities to access affordable skills and training.”

Mr Merlino said when the economy shrinks, responsible governments invest in skills and training to better prepare the workforce for recovery.

“Instead, the Baillieu Government is making unprecedented cuts that are devastating to TAFE providers like Swinburne Lilydale.”

“The local community has made its case clear – Mr Baillieu must reverse these cuts and start supporting TAFEs across Victoria.”

“Are you listening now Mr Baillieu?”