This week the Morrison Government finally gave in to pressure from Labor and families across NSW to implement an urgent support package for the early learning sector.
Member for Eden-Monaro Kristy McBain and Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Education and Development Amanda Rishworth said they were pleased the Federal Government had finally responded to calls from the Australian Labor Party to provide this essential support to families.
Unfortunately, the Morrison Government dragged its feet to make this announcement. The delay cost the sector millions, cost educators’ jobs, and cost families across NSW hundreds of dollars in childcare fees they shouldn’t have been paying.
With families, educators and services still working through the detail of the Morrison Government’s announcement, there remains a lot of confusion. Both Ms McBain and Ms Rishworth will be hosting a community zoom for people in Eden-Monaro to understand what these changes mean for people on the ground, and to hear about the consequences of the Morrison Government’s delay in providing a support package.
“People in the Eden-Monaro are committed to following health orders and staying at home, but this lockdown has been another blow to our businesses and our communities who have been battling disasters and border closures for far too long,” Ms McBain said.
“Families across the electorate have really felt the financial effects of this lockdown and unfortunately many local families have been carrying the financial burden of keeping services afloat, by having to continue to pay fees for childcare they weren’t accessing.
“The belated announcement by the Morrison Government is welcome news to many childcare services and families in my electorate, and we hope it will help to ease the financial pressure many families, services and educators are facing.
“Amanda and I understand the importance of childcare. This is why we’re inviting the community to join us as we share information on what these lockdowns mean to childcare services and our families.”
Childcare services across the Eden-Monaro can now waive gap fees for all families whose children are not attending and in doing so, services will be able to access business continuity payments of 25 per cent of their pre-lockdown revenue. Outside School Hours Care (OSHC) services will be eligible for payments of 40 per cent.
Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Education and Development Amanda Rishworth said she had been calling on the Morrison Government to implement an urgent support package for the early learning sector for many weeks.
“It has been clear in our ongoing talks with providers and educators how dire the situation has become. Providers have been telling us their viability has been seriously at risk,” Ms Rishworth said.
“The government’s senseless delay has come at a significant cost for the sector, educators, and families.”
Ms McBain and Ms Rishworth’s childcare community zoom will take place on Tuesday 31 August at 6pm.
Register to attend the event by visiting https://www.kristymcbain.com.au/events/events/