Fianna Fáil TD for Cavan-Monaghan Brendan Smith has called for the swift completion of the government’s review into the cost of providing quality childcare. He also wants a larger focus on affordability.
Deputy Brendan Smith explained, “The current childcare system is not working for anyone. Parents are faced with high costs which are simply unaffordable.
“Ireland is now among the most expensive OECD countries in which to access childcare, and the National Recruitment Federation has cited it as a concern for Ireland’s economy. According to the NRF, “worryingly low” numbers of Irish women are active in the labour force, as a result of the exceptionally high cost of childcare here.
“As well as high childcare costs for parents, many childcare providers are struggling to keep their heads above water, as they face considerable costs in delivering a quality service. Many crèches and childcare facilities are struggling to retain skilled workers, owing to the lack of income and career progression opportunities within a struggling sector.
“This is an unacceptable situation. Fianna Fáil urges the government to complete its review of the cost of quality childcare provision so that we have the data and information needed to build a strong childcare sector. Furthermore, we need to see increased investment by government to assist providers, both private and community, and parents in ensuring that childcare facilities remain viable and that every child has access to childcare”.