THURSDAY, 14 AUGUST 2014
The Abbott Government has released figures this week that show more than 80 per cent of all family day care services will have their funding cut as a result of Federal Budget changes which saw $157.1 million cut from family day care.
An eligibility self-assessment tool was released yesterday by the Department of Education for the Community Support Programme, which provides funding to family day care services, showed that the overwhelming majority of services will be directly affected by the funding cuts.
This proves the Government’s cut to family day care will have a devastating impact on the services and the families who rely on them to provide early education to their children and enable them to participate in the workforce.
“We have already seen many family day care services announcing their imminent closure as a result of the Abbott Government’s Budget cuts,” Shadow Minister for Early Childhood, Kate Ellis, said.
“These cuts to family day care are hitting families who are already feeling the impact of the $1 billion in cuts to child care announced by the Abbott Government since the election.”
“This is a huge cut which means families will either have to pay more in fees or see their children out of care when their services close.”
At the start of the year Assistant Minister for Education Sussan Ley said only new services would have to apply for ongoing funding, but the Budget changes mean all services will have to reapply for funding under much tighter eligibility criteria, which means most services will miss out.
“Tony Abbott says he wants to increase women’s workforce participation but in practice all he is doing is slashing support for the existing services families rely on every day, while fighting for a paid parental leave scheme accessible by millionaires,” Kate Ellis said.
Family day care is part of the National Quality Framework and offers early education in a small group setting.
“The Government promised no cuts to education before the election, but seems determined to continue to cut with no regard to the damage it is causing.”