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DEPARTMENT OF

«mss

LABOUR A N D NATIONAL SERVICE

N E W S R E L E A S E

F o r R e le a s e : P.M. F r id a y ,. 2 0 th F e b r u a r y , 1970.

- PRESS STATEMENT BY THE HON- B- M. SNEDDEN, Q .C ., M .P .,

MINISTER FOR LABOUR AND NATIONAL SERVICE

CHILD CARE CENTRES

The r e s u l t s c f a s tu d y i n t o t h e p a t t e r n o f C h ild Care C e n tr e s 'i n

A u s t r a l i a w ere r e l e a s e d to d a y by t h e M i n i s t e r fcsr L abour and N a t io n a l

S e r v i c e , Mr. Snedden. .

He s a i d h i s D e p artm en t had begun t h e s tu d y some tim e ago t o

e s t a b l i s h t h e a v a i l a b i l i t y o f C e n tr e s f o r p r e - s c h o o l age c h i l d r e n o f

w o rk in g m o th e rs . .

The r e p o r t , " C h ild Care C e n t r e s " , t h e s e v e n th i n t h e "Women In

The Work F o rc e " s e r i e s , r e v e a l e d t h a t 14,000 c h i l d r e n o f p r e - s c h o o l age

, a tt e n d e d 555 r e g i s t e r e d f u l l - d a y C h ild Care C e n tr e s . .

Mr. Snedden s a i d t h a t , t a k e n i n c o n ju n c ti o n w ith t h e S t a t i s t i ­

c i a n ' s r e c e n t s u r v e y i n d i c a t i n g t h e demand f o r C h ild Care C e n t r e s , t h e

D e p a r tm e n t's r e p o r t showed t h e l i m i t a t i o n s o f t h e a v a i l a b l e s e r v i c e s .

"A lth o u g h t h e r e a r e d i f f e r e n c e s o f o p in io n i n t h e community on

w h e th e r m o th e rs w ith young c h i l d r e n s h o u ld w ork, i t i s e s s e n t i a l t o

e n s u re t h a t w here m o th e rs ch oose t o work t h e i r c h i l d r e n r e c e i v e a d e q u a te

c a r e , " Mr. Snedden s a i d . =

He s a i d t h a t t h e r e p o r t p r e s e n t e d i n f o r m a t i o n on t h e number and.

c a p a c i t y o f r e g i s t e r e d C e n tr e s g i v i n g f u l l - d a y c a r e f o r young c h i l d r e n .

I t d e t a i l e d t h e more i m p o r t a n t ' c o n d itio n s - t h e s e C e n tr e s m ust m eet i n

o r d e r to. b e ·r e g i s t e r e d i n v a r i o u s p a r t s o f A u s t r a l i a , i n c l u d i n g minimum

s t a f f / c h i l d r e n r a t i o s w here a p p l i c a b l e .

- 2 -

T h e S t a t i s t i c i a n ' s s u r v e y i n d i c a t e d t h e r e w e r e 2 0 0 , 0 0 0 m o t h e r s

i n t h e W o r k F o r c e w i t h 2 5 0 , 0 0 0 c h i l d r e n u n d e r s i x y e a r s o l d . J u s t o v e r

l1o o f t h e s e c h i l d r e n w ere i n C h i l d C are C e n t r e s o f some s o r t and t h i s

was b r o a d l y t h e same k i n d o f p a t t e r n r e v e a l e d i n s t u d i e s i n C anada,

A m e ric a , and B r i t a i n .

Mr. S n ed d en s a i d t h a t t h e f i g u r e o f a b o u t 1 4 ,0 0 0 c h i l d r e n o f

p r e - s c h o o l a g e i n r e g i s t e r e d f u l l - d a y C h i l d C are C e n t r e s was c o n s i s t e n t

w i t h t h e S t a t i s t i c i a n ' s f i n d i n g t h a t a b o u t 1 8 ,5 0 0 c h i l d r e n w e re i n p a r t

o r f u l l - d a y c a r e , i n r e g i s t e r e d and u n r e g i s t e r e d C e n t r e s . .

He l i s t e d t h e f o l l o w i n g a s o t h e r m a j o r f i n d i n g s i n t h e r e p o r t s

. The m a j o r i t y o f t h e 555 r e g i s t e r e d f u l l - d a y C h i l d C a re C e n t r e s a r e

r u n by p r i v a t e i n d i v i d u a l s o r o r g a n i s a t i o n s on a c o m m e rc ia l b a s i s .

. Two e m p lo y e r s p r o v i d e C e n t r e s f o r t h e f u l l - d a y c a r e o f t h e p r e -

’ s c h o o l a g e d c h i l d r e n c f t h e i r e m p lo y e e s .

• Some f i n a n c i a l a s s i s t a n c e fro m S t a t e o r l o c a l Governm ent a u t h o r ­

i t i e s i s r e c e i v e d by 40 n o n - p r o f i t C e n t r e s c a r i n g f o r 2 ,0 0 0

c h i l d r e n . A lm ost w i t h o u t e x c e p t i o n , t h e s e C e n t r e s c a t e r s p e c i f i ­

c a l l y f o r c h i l d r e n fro m f a m i l i e s w i t h s p e c i a l n e e d s , e . g . one '

p a r e n t f a m i l i e s , f a m i l i e s i n econom ic n e e d . .

. The l e g i s l a t i o n , r e g u l a t i o n s and s t a n d a r d s t o be o b s e r v e d i n C h i ld

C are C e n t r e s v a r y g r e a t l y fro m S t a t e t o S t a t e , and so m e tim e s

w i t h i n a S t a t e .

. F e e s c h a r g e d f o r c h i l d c a r e v a r y c o n s i d e r a b l y t h r o u g h o u t A u s t r a l i a

and d e p en d on w h e t h e r C e n t r e s a r e s u b s i d i s e d and w h e t h e r t h e y a r e

- 3 -

r u n o n a c o m m e r c i a l " b a s i s . I n s u b s i d i s e d C e n t r e s , e s p e c i a l l y

t h o s e c a t e r i n g f o r c h i l d r e n i n s p e c i a l n e e d , f e e s a r e f r e q u e n t l y

b a s e d o n p a r e n t s ' i n c o m e . I n C e n t r e s w h i c h a r e n o t s u b s i d i s e d ,

f e e s a r e o f t e n b e t w e e n $ 1 0 a n d $ 1 2 a w e e k .

MELBOURNE.

2 0 t h F e b r u a r y , 1 9 7 0 .