Sinn Féin TD supports call from Childcare sector for increased funding in Budget 2022 – Matt Carthy TD
Cavan Monaghan Sinn Féin TD, Matt Carthy, has called on the Government to increase funding to the childcare sector in Budget 2022 and reform the sector in a way that is fairer for parents, providers and staff.
Teachta Carthy said:
“Childcare costs continue to spiral to levels that are neither affordable nor sustainable for ordinary working families. It is representative of just how bad this crisis has gotten that it is now common to hear the cost of childcare referred to as a second mortgage.
“Ireland has some of the highest childcare costs in the EU. This is unfair and unsustainable. All the while, the professionals who work in the sector are underpaid.
“An effective childcare system would benefit the broader economy, as the current dysfunctional system forces many parents, especially mothers, out of the workforce.
“Last year Sinn Féin called for a sustainability fund for the childcare sector which was opposed by both Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael. Without proper supports we will continue to hear reports such as that pregnant mothers are having to register for places in creches before their children are even born.
“Highly qualified childcare workers are often paid little more than minimum wage. This is clearly a significant part of the reason why workers are leaving the sector in droves.
“Equally, we are continuously hearing from creche managers about problems they are facing to insure their businesses, in some instances with premiums having more than doubled in recent years.
“Our childcare system simply isn’t fit for purpose. Fees are far too high and wages are far too low. The system doesn’t work well enough for parents, staff or providers.
“Sinn Féin therefore fully support calls by those working in the sector for a serious increase in Government spending in this area. Budget 2022 is the natural opportunity to address the gross underspend in this sector.”