Rishworth hits out at “entirely eroded” childcare system
The Sector > Policy > Rishworth hits out at “entirely eroded” childcare system

Rishworth hits out at “entirely eroded” childcare system

by Freya Lucas

February 08, 2021

Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Education and Development Amanda Rishworth has hit out at the child care subsidy system, saying that the benefit of subsidies and rebates has been “entirely eroded” for many Australian families only two and a half years into the reforms it promised. 


At the time of announcing the new system, Rishworth said, the Prime Minister dubbed the system “a once in a generation reform,” promising the changes would make childcare more affordable. 


Instead, she continued, ABS data has shown that for Brisbane, Sydney and Darwin parents, childcare is now more expensive than when the system was introduced in mid-2018. 


The Government currently predicts that fee increases will outstrip CPI “for years to come,” the Shadow Minister said, something which will mean the “hits keep coming” for Australian families. 


Ms Rishworth called on Federal Education Minister Alan Tudge to acknowledge the system has “failed to keep a lid on out of pocket costs”. 


She went on to argue that the Australian Labor Party (ALP) proposal, Cheaper Child Care for Working Families will create better results for Australian families by: 


  • Scrapping the $10,560 child care subsidy cap which often sees women losing money from an extra day’s work;
  • Lift the maximum child care subsidy rate to 90 per cent; and,
  • Increase child care subsidy rates and taper them for every family earning less than $530,000.


Under the proposal, the ALP would also introduce a price regulation mechanism to “shed light on costs and fees and drive them down for good,” Ms Rishworth said.


The Productivity Commission will also conduct a comprehensive review of the sector with the aim of implementing a universal 90 per cent subsidy for all families.

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