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Parents deserve the facts on child care



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Ministers' Media Centre Education, Employment and Workplace Relations portfolio

Parents deserve the facts on child care

On 5 August 2013 the government assumed a Caretaker role, with an election to be held 7 September 2013.

Media releases, transcripts and speeches for the DEEWR Ministers and Parliamentary Secretary can be accessed via the ALP website until after the election and the conclusion of the caretaker period.

Monday 7 May 2012 Media Release

The Hon Kate Ellis MP [link:/ellis]

• Minister for Employment Participation • Minister for Early Childhood and Child Care

Minister for Early Childhood and Child Care, Kate Ellis said today that scaremongering on child care from some groups in the sector had to stop and called for a debate based on the facts.

"When families are making decisions about the care of their children then they should do so based on the facts and not misleading push polls,” Ms Ellis said.

“And the facts are that our Government is investing record funding to improve affordability, increase accessibility and raise the quality of child care.”

The Labor Government has increased the child care rebate from 30 to 50 per cent, so that parents can now claim up to $7500 per child per year.

The child care rebate payment is also available fortnightly, so parents no longer have to wait until the end of the year to receive this importance assistance.

Ms Ellis said that increased Government support is having a real impact, with out-of-pocket child care costs for a family on $7500 a year with one child in full time care falling from 13 per cent of disposable income in 2004 to 7.5 per cent in 2011.

"Whilst there have been a lot of misleading statements made about the impact of our child care quality reforms - they recognise the importance of quality early childhood education during the first few years of life and are making sure Australian kids are given the best possible start.”

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Last month’s child care CPI figures actually showed a smaller increase in costs than those experienced in the same quarter in each of the last two years of the Howard Government -when they were doing nothing to lift the quality of care whatsoever.

“Australian families are also using child care for more days a week and for more hours than they ever have before thanks to our Government’s investments,” Ms Ellis said.

"We've seen a massive 36 per cent increase in the number of child care services since Labor came to Government and the expansion of the sector shows no signs of slowing. In fact, there were 500 new services established in the last 12 months alone.”

The latest figures show that the number of hours of long day care used per family increased by 4.3 per cent from June 2010 to June 2011.

A 2010 Treasury working paper specifically examining the link between women’s workforce participation and child care, also noted that quality as well as affordability and accessibility is correlated with women’s workforce participation.

“I'm the first one to acknowledge that there will always be more to do when it comes to helping out working parents,” Ms Ellis said.

“Juggling work and family is never going to be easy and that’s why our Government has made child care affordability, accessibility and quality a priority.”

“I’m proud that we now have a system that is delivering more funding than ever before, to support more families to access child care, for longer hours.”

“There is always more to do when it comes to delivering for working parents but when we’re having that debate, we should do so based on facts not fiction.”

For more information

Media Contact: media@deewr.gov.au [link:mailto:media@deewr.gov.au] Non-media queries: 1300 363 079

Page 2 of 2 Parents deserve the facts on child care | Ministers' Media Centre

27/08/2013 http://ministers.deewr.gov.au/ellis/parents-deserve-facts-child-care