As unlikely as it is to see a Labor leader in northern Sydney, parental advocate Georgie Dent says it's even more unlikely to see a politician engaged in the childcare conversation.
Around a kitchen table in the traditionally blue-ribbon seat, Anthony Albanese heard the childcare woes of working parents on Wednesday.
There were stories from a mother who struggled to find child care for her neurodiverse daughter, a father who said the system reinforced traditional structures which negatively impacted women and another who at one point spent more on child care than rent.
"Going back to work is an expensive hobby," mother-of-three Dinah Thomasset said.
Ms Dent, executive director of advocacy agency The Parenthood, said making early childhood education and care more affordable and accessible would support families.
"(It's) the smartest economic and social reform we can pursue," she said.
Yet while Mr Albanese promised parents cheaper child care for more working families he stopped short of guaranteeing Labor would attach superannuation to paid parental leave.
While he said that is a policy he would like to introduce, it was not going to happen in Labor's first term given Australia's debt levels.
"It's something that would be a positive move but one of the things we're doing in this election is under-promising so we can over-deliver," he told reporters on Wednesday.
"We're not promising to do everything we would like to do in our first term."
Labor campaign spokesperson Jason Clare denied the opposition had a small target strategy.
If elected, a Labor government would review what more they could do in each budget, he said.
"We've got to rub out this silly idea (of small targets) - what we're offering here is a smart target and well developed policies," he told reporters in Sydney.
"You can't do everything, as much as we would like to. There's hard decisions that we've got to make."
Australian Associated Press
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