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14th February 2019 | Childcare, Press Releases

State funded childcare needed to stem creeping inequality: Greens

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The Green Party is calling on the government to implement state funded childcare to address creeping inequality.

This comes as figures released today from the ESRI reveal that children from disadvantaged groups have less chance of having their childcare needs met.

Green Party Spokesperson on Childcare and Youth Affairs Pauline O’Reilly said:

“Again we see that the lives of children are deeply affected by social inequality. Today’s report from the ESRI emphasises that lone parents, those on low incomes and parents with a disability find childcare significantly harder to access due to cost.

“We need state funded childcare available to everyone along with a scheme to financially support childminding and stay at home parents. We see this model working well in Scandinavian countries such as Finland.

“23% of lone parent families and 20% of parents with a disability reported problems with access to childcare compared with 13% of families not in this bracket.

“What is required is not the sticking plaster approach of the Affordable Childcare Scheme which has made no real difference for many families. We must see the government tackle the entire financial security of families as it affects childcare, housing and health.

“The children who are leaving emergency accommodation every morning to go to school are predominantly the same section of society and yet the government has failed to implement solutions such as the Joint Oireachtas Committee Report on the Position of Lone Parents.

“The ESRI report also examines access to home care and finds access is  harder for those from disadvantaged backgrounds”.