Childcare
Childcare

From $98 to $112 a day: Is childcare worth it

MOTHERS have been left questioning whether going to work is even worth it with much of their pay packets being spent on increasing childcare costs.

Townsville has seen a 7 per cent increase in average child care per hour fees, with predictions showing costs are set to rise by 4.1 per cent every year for the next four years.

It's a big hit for families and parents like single mother of two Ashley Amos, who juggles full time university, unpaid work placements and her casual job as a support worker.

She said childcare has jumped from $86 per day four years ago, slowly increasing to $98 per day last year and $110 per day this year.

Single mother of two, Ashley Amos, with her two children. PICTURE: SUPPLIED.
Single mother of two, Ashley Amos, with her two children. PICTURE: SUPPLIED.

It means paying to put her kids in daycare so she can even go to work is costing her much of her income.

"I need to have my children in daycare, even if it's only a few days a week, and then trying to find someone to babysit if I have to work on their days home," Ms Amos said.

"Even with daycare subsidies through Centrelink, it's still costing me nearly $200 per week to send my children to daycare for just 3 days a week.

"If daycare prices continue along this rate, I am not going to be able to afford daycare, which in turn means I can no longer work in order to pay my bills."

She's concerned the high costs are going to force many to rely even more on Government handouts.

Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Development and Education Amanda Rishworth is seen at the Kids' Early Learning Lalor Park, in Sydney. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Bianca De Marchi
Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Development and Education Amanda Rishworth is seen at the Kids' Early Learning Lalor Park, in Sydney. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Bianca De Marchi

Shadow Minister for Early Childhood Education and Development, Amanda Rishworth has hit out at the Federal Government and said the increase in fees will substantially outstrip inflation.

"Families in North Queensland are already struggling with soaring fees, as are families across the country," she said.

"(The childcare system) has failed to keep a lid on out of pocket costs, and it has failed to support working parents, particularly women, to work full time or increase their hours."

Federal member for Herbert Philip Thompson with Senator Pauline Hanson. PICTURE: MATT TAYLOR.
Federal member for Herbert Philip Thompson with Senator Pauline Hanson. PICTURE: MATT TAYLOR.

Federal member for Herbert, Phillip Thompson said after investing heavily in government subsidies, out of pocket costs for parents were 1.8 per cent lower in the December 2020 quarter than before child care package was introduced in July 2018.

"The rising cost of living is a concern raised with me regularly, and as a father of young girls I'm conscious of the cost of child care," he said.

 

 

matthew.taylor5@news.com.au

Originally published as From $98 to $112 a day: Is childcare worth it


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