The State Labor MPs of the Central Coast are calling for a review of the State Hospital Parking policy, saying the increased cost of parking at Gosford and Wyong Hospitals is a “major burden” to the Coast community.
MPs, David Harris, (Wyong), David Mehan, (The Entrance) and, Liesl Tesch, (Gosford) have joined Swansea MP, Yasmin Catley, in calling on the State government to review the policy “so that it is more reflective of the realities of the Central Coast, including socioeconomic status and access to public transport”.
Harris said rising hospital parking fees were “nothing more than a tax on the sick”.
“The Government needs to take into account the nature of the area and not apply this tax on patients, staff and visitors,” he said.
Mehan said people didn’t choose to go to hospital and shouldn’t be charged excessive fees for doing so, while Tesch said staff parking fees also needed to be addressed.
“The cost for staff who work at the hospital means that some who can’t afford to pay have to park hundreds of metres away and walk through unlit streets late at night to get back to their cars,” she said.
“This is unacceptable.”
The MPs said the Coast was being “punished” for having to rely on cars to get around because of a lack of quality public transport in the region.
They are demanding three hours free public parking and a daily maximum of $12 at Gosford Hospital, and a cap on staff fees of $13.92 per week.
At Wyong Hospital, they say parking should stay free for staff and visitors due to the lack of public transport and the hospital’s distance from major transport hubs.
Media release, May 31
MPs, David Harris, (Wyong), David Mehan, (The Entrance) and, Liesl Tesch, (Gosford)