• Houses of the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Health and Children: Report on Affordable and Quality Childcare

    Posted on January 29, 2016 by in News Updates



    The Report is the result of number of hearings held by the Committee, which allowed various stakeholders to address the Committee on developing an affordable and quality childcare system in Ireland.

    Some of the recommendations include:

    • There should be no separation, as far as possible, between treatment of private and community services in delivery of childcare services. All services are governed by the same legislation and same standards, with similar staffing pay scales.

    • The process of publication of Tulsa Inspection Reports should be standardised and accelerated.

    • Adequate resources are needed to ensure the extension of free childcare year benefits the estimated 127,000 additional children in its first year of operation.

    • The National Childcare Co-ordination Committee should be re-established.

    • Efforts must be made to ensure that the au pair industry recruitment agencies are aware of, and comply with the Employment Agencies Act 1971.An eligible employment permit should be introduced for domestic work in order to respond to labour market demand and mitigate exploitation.

    Committee Chair, Jerry Buttimer TD says:

    “Since its formation in 2011, the Joint Committee on Health and Children has worked to support the childcare infrastructure in Ireland. We are very conscious of the changing landscape of childcare provision in Ireland and the challenges faced by families and by the childcare sector itself.”

    “Report Rapporteur, Sandra McLellan TD, has formed a report based on our hearings and it outlines the main issues to be addressed, namely, the cost of childcare; the quality of childcare and a lack of access to services for some families. High quality child care and education not only benefits children, it is also good for the economy and society as a whole. The Report also address the issues of paid maternity and paternity leave, as well as the issues faced by the families of children with special needs.”

    “The Report makes a number of practical recommendations for ensuring adequate supports for children from all sections of Irish society, while also offering a unique approach to suit each individual child’s needs.”

    “The Committee would like to extend its thanks to everyone who contributed towards this report. We believe that it offers practical solutions towards nurturing our children and we hope that the Minister for Children will consider this document carefully.”


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