Thrive by Five welcomes Labor’s ambitious childcare policy and calls for bipartisan support
31 March 2022 – The Thrive by Five campaign has welcomed a commitment by the Federal Labor Opposition to reduce the cost of childcare and wants bipartisan support for a universally accessible, high-quality and affordable early learning system.
Federal Labor responded to Tuesday’s Budget with a more ambitious early learning and child care policy, including:
- lifting the maximum child care subsidy for one child;
- increasing the child care subsidy rates for every family with one child earning less than $530,000;
- extending the increased subsidy to outside school hours care; and.
- engaging the Productivity Commission to review the sector with the aim of implementing a universal 90 per cent subsidy for all families.
Thrive by Five Director Jay Weatherill said the budget reply had set the scene for early learning and care’s elevation from discussion at kitchen tables and centre gates to a key issue at the coming election.
“Out of pocket early learning and care costs have risen nearly 10 per cent over the past two years, a strong indicator the nation’s early learning system must be reformed,” Mr Weatherill said.
“Childcare costs will only keep rising over the coming year, while ballooning inflation eats away at wages and the real spending power of households
“Australian parents need urgent relief from soaring living costs and investment in early childhood education and care is one of the best ways of delivering it.
“Every dollar spent on early learning delivers $2 back in benefits. But given the crucial role of the early years in learning and development, the difference made in people’s lives is priceless.
“Accessible and affordable early learning for all Australians is a smart way of giving children the right start in life, getting more parents into the workforce and growing the economy.
“Now is the time for all political parties to commit to universally accessible, high-quality and affordable early learning and care system for all Australians,” Mr Weatherill said.