Unaffordable childcare failing families
Commenting on the latest official figures on the cost of childcare here, Labour spokesperson on Children and Youth Affairs, Deputy Sean Sherlock said:
“These figures highlight how working families are being absolutely hammered by unaffordable childcare costs.
“Just a day after the latest RTB data put average rent in Dublin at around €1700 per month, we see that parents in Dublin are also paying up to €1000 a month for childcare in some areas.
“This is another completely unsustainable situation and puts enormous financial pressure on families.
“Many parents are now having to rely on grandparents or turn to unregistered child minders to make childcare affordable.
“Despite all this investment in the sector we still have childcare workers paid too little and a huge shortage of crèche spaces for babies.
“Just last week the ESRI found that Ireland ranks among the worst in Europe for its record on childcare supports.
“The Minister has yet another opportunity in the budget next month to spend the money in the right way. We need to see an increase in the universal childcare subsidy and the expansion of the bands for wrap around hours.
“The reality is that despite three years in the job the Minister has failed to get on top of costs, and as revealed earlier in the year there are also major outstanding questions about quality.
“We need to see less talk from the Minister but real action.
“Without further substantial investment alongside the capping of costs for parents very little will change.”