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Political Briefing with Oireachtas Members on More Affordable Childcare

ECI members make powerful representations to politicians at Oireachtas briefing

October 9, 2017

Early Childhood Ireland want to say a massive THANK YOU to Louise Kilbane from Lollipop Lane crèche in Tubbercurry, Sligo, and Liz Jackson from the Tallaght Childcare Centre, Dublin, for their contributions at last Tuesday’s briefing (3rd October) to TDs and Senators about More Affordable Childcare, the planned Affordable Childcare Scheme and the impact of Government efforts to make childcare more affordable for parents. Their testimonies from the heart and from the ground about the impact of current funding models on sustainability and pay in the sector were expertly delivered. Whilst coming from different parts of the sector and thereby experiencing some challenges differently, their united voice and shared concern for the sector as a whole and its dedicated workforce shone through.

ECI used the briefing as an opportunity to raise our Budget 2018 recommendations with politicians and it was clear from the lively Q&A that followed that many share ECI’s concerns about the future direction of early years policy. As ever, ECI stressed the need to recognise the three essential, interconnected pillars of a world-class childcare system:

1. Quality for children;
2. Sustainability for both childcare services and their staff;
3. Affordability for parents.

Each of these pillars, which support the overall structure, requires significant, sustained and simultaneous investment by Government and thus joined-up thinking between the relevant government departments. To this end, we need a significant injection of investment now and a concrete plan for sustained investment that will be delivered over successive budgets.

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