A childminder in Wicklow has spoken about the “tedious” process of registering with Tusla, saying it took her seven months to complete it.
nne Ryan, from Rathdrum, Co. Wicklow, has been a professional childminder since 2008 but feels she had to ‘jump through hoops’ to make the list.
She is one of only 70 registered childminders in Tusla.
“Before Tusla, I had about 10 pages outlining my policies and procedures, which I gave to parents as a welcome pack,” Ms. Ryan said.
“Tusla said, ‘We need to see your procedures, we need more details.’ I had to completely redesign it and my policy is now 68 pages long.
“What parent is going to read all this? It’s pointless.”
At one point she was told that she might need to travel to New Zealand to complete the Garda vetting process because she had previously worked there for a year.
“I was told by the police in New Zealand that I would have to go there and get the information in person at a station. So I went back to Tusla and they said, ‘If you can’t get it, you can’t register,'” she said.
Ms. Ryan eventually resolved the issue and signed up in December 2019. She now looks after five pre-school children and one after-school child.
She said she wasn’t surprised how few of the thousands working in the country had signed up. Many don’t have the space in their homes for Tusla’s at least four preschoolers, or seven children of any age, meaning thousands of parents are left out of state child care grants (NCS).
Ms Ryan also hit back at suggestions from some industry sources that the low enrollment rate was due to childcare workers wanting to avoid paying taxes.
“It’s really hard for childminders when people say, ‘You’re not even registered with Tusla because you want cash on hand,'” she said.
“But they’re like, ‘No, that’s because we literally can’t, we’re not allowed to. Legislation is stopping us.”
“So there are people out there who want to do it but can’t. Before I registered, I still did all my tax returns every year,” she said.
The benefits of a Tusla registration are tremendous for them and their service users who can access the NCS, with the minimum being up to €1.40 per hour in January as part of a €121 million package.
“Accessing the NCS is so important for families, especially those on lower incomes. It saves them a lot of money,” she said.
She welcomes the childcare register to be introduced by Children’s Secretary Roderic O’Gorman next year. But she said it has to be done in an informed way. Mr O’Gorman has promised it will not be “massively onerous”.
https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/it-took-me-seven-months-to-register-with-tusla-childminder-told-faced-having-to-travel-to-new-zealand-to-complete-garda-vetting-42068385.html “It took me seven months to register with Tusla,” said the childminder, who had to travel to New Zealand to complete the Garda screening