Early care must focus on needs of children
Child Poverty Action Group supports the findings in “Through their lens”, the Children’s’ Commissioner’s inquiry into non-parental education and care of infants and toddlers.
The use of commercial child care for children under two has grown rapidly in recent years. This report provides the first examination of the quality of that care and alternatives for parents who want to look after their children at home. The inquiry provides a much-needed holistic examination of care for the under-twos and, most importantly, does so from the perspective of the child.
CPAG supports the Commissioner call for policies which better support parents who wish to care for their own children in the early years .
“To date the needs of the labour market and the need for providers to make profits has driven policy. Better support so that parents can care for their very young children themselves is highly desirable. However, because we do have babies in care for long periods, at very least the Commissioner should be supported in his call for better standards of care.
“That period from birth to three years is absolutely critical for children’s’ development, and supporting parents and children through these early years should be the focus of our childcare policies. Improving support for parents to care for their own children by reforming tax credits and paid parental leave is an important part of that.” Said CPAG spokesperson, Susan St John.
Background Material: CPAG backgrounder on Paid Parental Leave