Time to bring on childcare legislation
The Federal Government's announcement that it will fast-track the Jobs for Families Childcare Package into Parliament for debate has been welcomed by Goodstart Early Learning.
The bill proposing a $3 billion overhaul of childcare subsidies, which will ensure families have access to affordable care, has been included in the 26 priority bills approved by the Government party room for introduction into Parliament.
Not for profit social enterprise Goodstart believes the bill is a significant win for working families as it will make childcare more affordable.
Goodstart Early Learning advocacy manager John Cherry said he hoped all parties in Parliament would work constructively to get the bill improved and passed.
“Families have been waiting patiently for the Government to deliver on its promises over two elections to make childcare more accessible and more affordable,” he said. “Families are struggling with cost of living pressures now and they need certainty that their childcare costs will be reduced as promised.
“Improving workforce participation is a key piece of the Government’s ‘jobs and growth’ strategy with modelling showing the Childcare Package would increase productivity and growth and improve the Budget bottom line.
“The legislation needs minor amendments to improve access to early learning for children from low income families,” Mr Cherry said. “Research shows these children benefit most from access to quality early learning.
“The bill should be improved because while most working families were significant winners under the reforms, too many children from low income single income families would see their access to early learning cut.
“Ensuring all children have access to quality early learning is in Australia’s best long-term interests because investing in early learning now will increase productivity and make Australia’s economy more competitive in the future.
“We call on all parties in the Parliament to work together to ensure that this legislation is debated and amended to deliver a great outcome for Australian children and families. With some minor changes this package, already good for working families, could be great for all Australian children and our nation’s future,” he said.