No relief in sight for families

Sunday, 24 June 2018

Today’s reports that families are about to be hit with massive child care fee increases confirm once again the Turnbull Government is big on rhetoric and spin, but poor on delivery and substance.

Simon Birmingham has been telling families they will all be better off under the Liberals new system, even telling them;

“…our hourly fee cap will put downward pressure on prices…” Simon Birmingham, 29 October, 2017

Not only is there not an hourly cap on fees under the Turnbull Government’s unfair child care changes, the subsidy is destined to be swallowed up in higher fees.

The Government’s new system will pay a subsidy – after families jump through the government’s activity and means test hoops – based on a benchmark price. So any fee rises above the benchmark price will have to be paid straight out of families hip pockets.

This is a further blow to families who are doing it tough. Since the Liberals were elected families are paying, on average, over $2,160 more in fees.

Even under the new system, the Department’s figures show fees are projected to keep going up 6 per cent a year.

This is on top of the 279,000 families who will be worse off under the Turnbull Government’s unfair child care package which kicks off in just over a week. One in four families will be left to face child care fee hikes with less support from government.

Of course, this week we learned almost 24 per cent of families have yet to bother to register for the new system – and why would they, when this government has turned its back on them.

It’s no wonder families are looking for relief by enrolling children in preschool and kindy.

In today’s reports Simon Birmingham said that was a problem for the states and territories to worry about, and called on them to fund two years of preschool. The Minister is showing some front when he refuses to properly commit to the national program for universal access to preschool.

The facts are that under the Turnbull Government many families:

  • have less access to early learning,
  • are paying more than ever for early learning and face endless fee hikes, and
  • face uncertainty about whether their preschools and kindies will be funded after next year.

More News

Wednesday, 20 June 2018
1 in 4 families still yet to sign up to unfair child care package
Tuesday, 12 June 2018
Labor not alone with concerns about child care activity test
Wednesday, 06 June 2018
Minister has questions to answer