Only two Childminders registered with Túsla since September – Ó Laoghaire
According to an answer to a Parliamentary Question that was tabled by Sinn Féin TD Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire, the Department for Children and Youth Affairs revealed that only two childminders had registered with Túsla since September 1st 2016, despite new affordable childcare measures being put in place by Minister Zappone shortly afterwards.
Deputy Ó Laoghaire stated that this must be looked at, saying:
“Childminders play a vital role in Irish society and in early childhood care. They provide flexible out of hours services for those who work shift-work, and those who just need an hour here or there. For many it is a more realistic option than putting children in centres.
“Many of these childminders offer service essential to many families and would like to be able to do this in a way that allows them to take advantage of schemes such as the Affordable Childcare Scheme, but they cannot do that unless they are registered
“It is clear that not enough is being done to entice childminders into registering with Túsla. These numbers are practically zero despite the new scheme being flagged in September and announce in Budget 2017. More must be done to attract them into this process. They need supports and they need incentives.
“In particular, I urge the Minister to restore the Childminding Advisory Service that was operated by County & City Childcare Committees.
“I hope the Minister can see to it that more is done to enable registering with Túsla a viable option for childminders out there who currently, and quite obviously, have concerns about doing so.”