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Childcare fiasco failing working mums

4 December, 2003


Sinn Féin Fermanagh South Tyrone MP Michelle Gildernew MLA has accused the British government of failing working mums living in the Six Counties after a sharp rise in the number of complaints from constituents about the delays in processing working family tax credits and the impact on meeting childcare costs.

Ms Gildernew said:

"When the legislative changes moving responsibility for working tax credits into Inland Revenue were discussed in the Assembly‚s Social Development Committee, Sinn Féin warned that it was a disaster waiting to happen.

"Increasing numbers of people are coming to Sinn Féin to complain that they are facing delays of over 6 months in getting payments. This is hitting working mums hardest. It is impacting on their ability to meet childcare costs.

"The British government is failing working mums. It is undermining mothers returning to work and making it harder for them to move into the workplace. The situation is totally unacceptable.

"The sooner we get working institutions up and running the better. Those standing in the way of working institutions should realise that they are standing in the way of local politicians delivering local solutions. We need to be in a position where we can break away from British government policy decisions that are bad for local people."ENDS

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