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Who wants what for childcare in Budget 2018?

October 10, 2017

Today, Tuesday 10th October 2017, Budget 2018 is being announced by the Minister for Finance and Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe TD. ECI is outside Leinster House recording the announcements as they are made, giving our reaction on the ‘childcare measures’ to the media, and preparing an analysis of the Budget for our members, which you can read in next week’s Early Times Weekly.

For those of you following the announcements, Minister Donohoe is scheduled to take to the Dáil floor at 1pm and the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Katherine Zappone TD, will follow with a specific address about her Department’s budgetary allocation later in the day. ECI’s 20 Budget 2018 recommendations can be viewed here. We have also prepared a summary of what the political parties that published pre-budget submissions or alternative budgets want for ‘childcare’ in Budget 2018. In keeping with their Confidence and Supply Arrangement to facilitate a Fine Gael led Minority Government, Fianna Fáil has not published an alternative budget.

Please click on the party name to access their full submission. 

Who wants what for childcare in Budget 2018?
Party Quality Sustainability Affordability
Green Party There was no reference to Early Years, Early Years Care and Education or Childcare in the Green Party Pre-Budget Submission.
Labour

To immediately begin a programme to train at least 60 per cent of staff in the early year’s sector to degree level (Level 7 on the NFQ) by 2025.

Additional funding to childcare providers to increase minimum pay in the sector to at least the Living Wage of €11.70 during 2018. Increase the Universal Childcare Subsidy (UCS) to €1.50 and accompany with a new regulation to freeze overall childcare prices.

An additional two weeks of paid parental leave should be introduced in 2018. This leave will be shared between both parents, with a use-it-or lose-it clause built in to prevent mothers from always having to bear the responsibility of parenting during these early years.

Sinn Féin Roll out Síolta and Aistear through the County Childcare Committees (CCCs).  25% increase to non-contact time payments that will apply to all government-subsidised childcare schemes.

€40.58 million in anticipation of a sector wide pay agreement.

Extend the ECCE scheme by two weeks.

Increase capitation grants paid by the State to créches and pre-schools for each child participating in the ECCE programme.

Sustainability fund for Community Providers.

Increase the Universal Childcare Subsidy (UCS) from its current rate of €0.50 per-hour to €2.50 per-hour.
Social Democrats

Direct funding to the childcare sector to help improve training.

Direct funding to the childcare sector to help improve employment conditions and sustainability. A new Early Years payment to cover children from 9 months until entry to preschool. This would be €50 per month per child.

13 weeks of paid parental leave in 2018. This would be available to either parent and be the first phase in ultimately raising parental leave entitlement to cover the first year of a child’s life.

Extend the right to unpaid parental leave to those parents who wish to avail of it

Support the continued roll-out of the affordable childcare scheme.

Solidarity – People Before Profit     

Develop a state run and publicly owned childcare system delivering free public childcare for all. Improve the capacity and looking for synergies with existing providers and primary schools.

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