THE annual cost of full-time childcare for two-child family is €16,500 according to new report released this week.
The report, commissioned by the Donegal County Childcare Committee, was launched on Wednesday by Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald.
A major economic report revealing that the cost of childcare in Ireland is creating a barrier for parents who want to return to work.
Conducted by Indecon International Economic Consultancy Group, the nationwide report, entitled ‘Supporting Working Families – Releasing a Brake on Economic Growth’, examines potential policy options to address the childcare obstacles that exist as a barrier to employment.
According to the report, typical full-time childcare costs range from €730 – €1,100 per month, and a two-child family would spend €16,500 annually on full-time childcare.
These barriers to employment are particularly severe among lower income groups, with 56 per cent from this group indicating that childcare prevented them from looking for a job.
The report proposes two policy initiatives to reduce barriers to employment arising from childcare costs with a particular focus on solutions for families most in need.
These options include a tax incentive to assist low-income parents in employment in funding the cost of childcare, and a direct payment to families related to the cost of childcare through the Family Income Supplement Scheme (FIS)
Results from primary research show that a childcare incentive would increase labour market participation with 59 per cent of those surveyed indicating that such an incentive would encourage parents to return to work.
With 32,000 families currently assisted under FIS eligible for Community Childcare Subvention (CCS) support, the report proposes widening the range of childcare options available to these low-income families.
The full report can be downloaded from www.donegalchildcare.com