As season seven of the AFLW kicks off this weekend, the Opposition is calling on the Malinauskas Labor Government to put a greater focus on women’s sport and commit to funding female sports facilities beyond this year.
Despite women’s sports exploding in popularity, Labor will be calling time on their $13.2 million Female Facilities Program after only a year, with no funding allocated beyond 2021-22.
Shadow Minister for Sport, Recreation and Racing Vincent Tarzia said the move is incredibly hypocritical.
“Labor said we need to encourage more girls and women to participate in the sport they love, but surely that support must go beyond one year,” Mr Tarzia said.
“Many local sporting clubs tell me they are seeing unprecedented levels of female participation - and that enthusiasm must have the facilities to match.
“The AFLW is embarking on its biggest season yet with 18 teams taking part and thousands of young women and girls being inspired to follow in their footy heroes’ footsteps.
“We expect the popularity of women’s soccer to skyrocket too when the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup comes to Adelaide – an event made possible due the former Liberal Government’s $53 million investment to upgrade Hindmarsh Stadium.
“We also invested $26 million into a State Centre of Football at Gepps Cross to secure the Young Matilda’s training camp in the lead up to the World Cup.
“The former Liberal Government has a proud record when it comes to supporting sport, investing more than $400 million in projects across the state, including upgrades to grassroots clubs to encourage more families to get involved and to accommodate increasing female participation.
“We’ve made great strides when it comes to women’s sport, but we must continue to find ways to equalise opportunities for women and that’s why we’re calling on Labor to continue their Female Facilities Program for more than one year.
“We’re concerned about what Labor’s long-term vision is for women’s sport in South Australia and how they’re going to support our next generation of athletes.”