Reports today that child care providers are calling for the market approach in the sector to be reined in are a wake-up call for the Government.

This comes on top of anecdotal accounts of predatory practices, with the risk unscrupulous providers are trying to muscle in on Government subsidises and drive down quality and wages.

“Children, parents and educators must come before profits,” Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Education and Development, Kate Ellis, said.

“The mismatch between where centres are built and where parents need them is a major headache for providers, and for parents stuck on waiting lists – and there’s nothing in the Government’s recent changes to fix it.

“The federal government can’t just wash their hands of this issue. Taxpayers fund the vast bulk of our child care system and Government has a responsibility to make sure that investment gets the best outcomes.

“Labor has been arguing for some time for changes to put children and families first, not big investors.

“Experts, academics, parents, community services – and now even private providers – are calling for change too.

“We simply can’t afford to see a culture of rorts and profit-taking engulf our early childhood sector simply because the Government doesn’t have their eye on the ball.”