Childcare has become way too expensive.

Submitted by Editor on Thu, 07/07/2005 - 23:16

Figures from last week's Childcare Census and today's Bulletin show that childcare fees are a barrier to parents having more children, and the problem of soaring fees is getting worse and worse.
To read the whole story please click on "Read more" below.

The average weekly fee for one child in long day care is now $208 – up by more than 13% from 2002.

The latest Consumer Price Index figures (released in April) show that in the last 12 months, child care costs have increased by 12%.

Child care has increased at almost 5 times the rate for all goods and services.

News that Australia's corporate childcare giant ABC is offering debt facilities to parents shows just how unaffordable childcare in Australia has become.

The Government acknowledged in last year's election that child care fees are too high- the 30% rebate was the solution it proposed.

However the proposed 30% rebate is having the opposite effect - of pushing prices up.

While the Government stands by and does nothing about the massive increase in childcare fees, the promise of the rebate being available towards the end of 2006 is an invitation to parents to take on debt in order to meet their current childcare costs.

Inaction and bad childcare policy under the Howard Government is allowing profit-driven childcare operators like ABC to offer lines of credit to all parents, even if they are not eligible for the rebate.

Many parents will go into debt, not realising they will not be eligible for the rebate.

Parents who miss out on the rebate, or who receive a lot less money that they expected to under it, will have to pay ABC interest on the debt they enter into.

Contrary to claims being made that the massive increase in fees in some ABC centres is due to wage rises of childcare workers, no wage claim has yet been arbitrated or awarded in NSW, Queensland, South Australia or Western Australia.

ABC increased its profit by 59% in the half year ending December 2004.

For further information or comment please call (02) 9357 6366.

For further media comment, please contact: Tanya Plibersek MP on 02 9357 6366

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Childcare is Very Expensive!

Submitted by Anonymous on Mon, 26/02/2007 - 16:10.

I'm not a parent, but I babysit my 3 year old nephew. I understand the financial stress that expensive childcare fees can bring in your family. ABC is very unaffordable, especially for young families who don't earn a lot of money. My sister struggled each week to pay the fees. But she now relies on family to help look after her son, while she is working everyday and sometimes night.

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