All three main UK parties are pledging extra childcare for 3 and 4 year olds as parties vie for parent’s votes.
The Conservatives have pledged 30 hours a week, but only for working families – a real dissapointment in that it means the children of the unemployed, who would particularly benefit from high quality childcare will loose out.
Labour has promised 25 hours for all 3 and 4 year olds, with wraparound care for primary school children – this universal offer makes a lot more sense as it allows people to move into work and provides for both part time and full time hours.
The Lib Dems have said the same amount of childcare for all children of working parents aged between nine months and two years. with a “long-term ambition” to increase free provision to 20 hours a week for all two, three and four-year-olds and for children aged between nine months and two years of working parents. A good start – especially for younger children, but again the discrimination between working and non working means poorer children loose out.
What might this mean for unemployed parents
Children from families where there is someone at home might loose out on the extra childcare. A real disapointment as the more deprived your background the more you get from high quality childcare.
It could mean that they will have to be actively seeking work much earlier as politicians look towards wages paying towards costs.
With Universal Credit contributing for addittional costs it could mean that flexible working and full time working are both more feasible.