Sinn Féin representatives meet with Waterford Community Childcare Committee
Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Children’s Affairs Sandra McLellan TD and Senator David Cullinane today met with Waterford Community Childcare Committee to discuss issues facing the sector.
Following the meeting in the Tower Hotel, Senator Cullinane said:
“The overarching theme we heard today was the serious underfunding of the sector. It is unrealistic and shortsighted to presume improvements can be made while the resources aren't being provided to make those changes. An investment in childcare is ultimately an investment in children and the future of society. Affordable and accessible childcare for all types of families should be a right. Childcare is not only about caring for children, it is about the education and development of the individual from his or her earliest formative years.”
The meeting forms part of the work being undertaken by Deputy Sandra McLellan in her role as special rapporteur for the upcoming Oireachtas Health and Children Report into Childcare in Ireland
Deputy McLellan added:
“A long term vision and plan for the sector is needed urgently. This Government demands the further professionalisation of the sector and quality improvement. However, in order for that to happen proper resourcing and wage structures are essential. The clear message from today's meeting is that both workers and providers are extending themselves as far as they can to keep services open and running to a high standard. The commitment to the welfare of children, of both employers and employees, is unquestionable. They are calling for any changes in policy to be children-focused. What we need to see now is a matching of that commitment from this Government in the form of real solutions.”