Local Media

13,800 FAMILIES HIT WITH SOARING CHILD CARE FEES

May 20, 2021

New data released by the Federal Department of Education show families in Ipswich and the Somerset Region have been hit with soaring child care fees.

Federal Member for Blair, Shayne Neumann said the data shows over the previous 12 months, local child care fees increased by an average of 4.1 per cent across the region, well above the national increase of 2.4 per cent.

Region

Number of
children aged 0 - 6 years

Number of
families

Number of
services

% Growth in
Mean fee (Dec
2019 to Dec
2020)

Ipswich Hinterland

2490

1650

31

6.4

Ipswich Inner

8330

5840

68

3.7

Springfield - Redbank

9110

6310

68

2.2

TOTALS

19930

13800

167

 4.1% across the region

“The increase in fees was particularly high in the rural parts of Ipswich and Somerset Region, which experienced a 6.4 per cent increase,” Mr Neumann said.

“This increase in fees substantially outstripped inflation for the same period (0.9 per cent), which the Child Care Subsidy is pegged to - meaning local families are now paying more out of pocket for child care.”

The new data shows that nationwide, child care fees have soared by 37.2 per cent since the election of the Coalition Government in 2013.

“On average, child care fees are $4,446 more per year than when the Liberals came into office,” he said.

“The evidence is clear - the Coalition’s child care system is broken and Australian families are paying the price.

“Only Federal Labor has a real plan to tackle skyrocketing out of pocket child care costs and keep them down for good.”

Mr Neumann said an Albanese Labor Government will cut child care fees and put more money into the pockets of working families straight away, by:-

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

“Labor's plan will make child care more affordable for 97 per cent of families in the system – four times as many as the Morrison Government’s plan.

“Only Labor will keep out of pocket costs down for families, by tasking the ACCC to design a price regulation mechanism to shed light on costs and fees and drive them down for good.

“By contrast, the Morrison Government has no plan to keep a lid on soaring child care fees.

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

“Scott Morrison’s child care system has failed 13,800 local families. It 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.

“Only Labor will fix that for good.”

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