Federal Labor boost to high quality, affordable child care

Labor candidate for Bendigo, Lisa Chesters, today welcomed the Federal Labor Government’s announcement to boost support for high quality and affordable child care.

"It’s only fair that working parents have confidence that their child will receive high quality care from well-trained staff," Ms Chesters said.

"A new $300 million Early Years Quality Fund is being created to help child care providers with the cost of employing more qualified workers, and to ensure the highest quality education and care is being provided. This is wonderful news for the Bendigo and central Victorian early childhood education sector.”

"Under the plan, eligible services will receive grants to increase wages for employees with a Certificate III by $3 per hour from July 1."

"To qualify, child care benefit approved providers must be able to demonstrate how they will meet the National Quality Framework qualification requirements."

"Further, child care providers must agree that any fee increases must reflect actual increases in costs, and parents must be given more information about the financial help the Federal Government provides to them through the Child Care Benefit and Child Care Rebate."

"Right now the industry is in crisis with a third of educators leaving the sector every year and I have no doubt the figures are no different in Bendigo. High staff turnover puts the intellectual, emotional and social development of our children at risk.”

Late last year I was proud to join child care educators, parents and supporters from central Victoria and other communities across Victoria in a historic rally. Rally participants called for professional wages, without slugging parents, for the professional work our dedicated child care educators do.

"This announcement is proof the Labor Government is listening and willing to work with the Early Childhood Education Sector to help solve the crisis."

“Labor has a strong track record of investing in early childhood education. Only Labor can be trusted to invest in crucial early childhood education and care services that Australian families need and deserve," Ms Chesters said.