Child care costs for families will be cut by a quarter from January 2, according to Children’s Minister Roderic O’Gorman.
The long-awaited rate cut is being welcomed by struggling families facing soaring heating bills this winter.
This comes as a result of ministers agreeing to cut fees by 25 per cent under the 2023 budget as taxpayers’ funding of childcare has increased significantly.
Parents will benefit from an average reduction in their fees of 25 cents from 2 January, with the universal subsidy increasing by 90 cents from 50 cents an hour to €1.40 an hour for a maximum of 45 hours a week.
“These are not promises,” Secretary O’Gorman said Irish Independent. “It’s a real delivery, the largest childcare fee cut in the state’s history. I secured the largest increase in annual childcare investment in state history.
Nearly 90 percent of the country’s childcare providers have signed up for base funding
“This subsidy will be deducted from all bills. Now some people’s bills are higher and lower. So what we’re saying is that nationwide it’s going to be an average (cut) of 25 percent.”
Eligible for the discount are families with children older than six months but younger than 15 years who are registered with Tusla and in contact with the Ministry of Children.
“We have also been able to increase the sustainability of providers, the childcare providers themselves, through core funding (of) €259 million this year,” said Mr. O’Gorman.
He added that small organizations dedicated exclusively to Early Childhood Care and Education Scheme will now receive €27 million in funding, almost double the previous €14 million.
Nearly 90 percent of the country’s childcare providers have signed up for base funding. However, last month 500 daycare childcare providers closed for a day to protest the new funding model, which they say is unfair and has resulted in small providers losing higher head and support payments.
Separately, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has promised to reduce pediatrics waiting lists over the next two years, with his department also establishing a new department focused on reducing child poverty and improving well-being.
https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/politics/childcare-boost-as-creche-bills-to-be-cut-by-25pc-from-next-week-42245388.html Increase in childcare as daycare bills are cut by 25 per cent from next week