28 Jun 2022

'Desperate uncertainty' - Irish childcare sector calls for longterm plan

'Desperate uncertainty' - Irish childcare sector calls for longterm plan

'Desperate uncertainty' - Irish childcare sector calls for longterm plan

A leader in the early years sector is calling on the government to implement a "coherent" childcare plan. 

Early Childhood Ireland (ECI) said young children deserve more than what they've called the government's "shorttermist approach". 

The group has called on the government to make the 2022 budget 'The Childcare Budget' by committing to doubling investment in childcare by 2028 and by publishing an accompanying plan. 

According to the group, the delayed announcement on the future of the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (introduced in response to the Covid-19 crisis to support salaries in childcare settings) is the latest example of leaving employers and families with "desperate uncertainty" in the future. 

Director of Policy with ECI, Frances Byrne, said, "We are in a very stark scenario where expecting parents are putting as-yet-unnamed children on waiting lists while crèche operators can’t be certain whether they will still be in a position to offer a place by the time that child is born. 

"Ireland is a proud member of the EU, and Irish children deserve the same quality and consistency of care and education as is available in the other Member States. Instead, we languish shamelessly at the bottom of the international investment league. The government has a 5-year window to change this. Budget 2022 must provide the first steps to address historical under-investment in this essential public service." 

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