Childcare costs- someone talk me through the outrage

(447 Posts)
Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 15:00:54

Is it just me or does it seem a bit grabby of mothers to be getting cross about the change to child care rules?

I thought the rules were being changed to try and encourage people to work. Ie to give them more choice and be option generating aka A. Good. Thing.

But the stay at home mums voice in the media just sounds a bit self important.

Don't misunderstand me, I am entirely on favour of people and families making decisions which suit them. This isn't about that. It's about people being a bit....indulged? Make a choice, stick with it. The more choices which are available the better so if the gvnt can help (a different argument about whether they should) by offering money to assist people go to work, then fab. But don't demand it for making the choice to stay at home.

float62 Sun 31-Mar-13 18:00:11

I'm kinda with the OP on this one. I believe the newly announced change only applies to families with two working parents who earn too much for tax credit assistance and they can only get back 20% of the first £6,000 of their childcare costs, maximum claim £1,200p.a. Therefore, it's pretty irrelevant to SAHPs who aren't paying out the childcare costs in the first place; how can you ask for a rebate on something you aren't paying? I see the policy more as a panacea for those who may have lost some CHB rather than an attack on SAHMs.

herhonesty Sun 31-Mar-13 18:01:04

Op I sort of agree with you. Sahm do get a pretty good benefit which they seem to forget - economically active people - tax payers covering the costs of their access to the nhs, education, other public goods. I'll get flamed for this!

I do see there is an issue with those actively looking for work, but I don't see why tax payers should fund childcare over and above nursery provision

babybythesea Sun 31-Mar-13 18:02:11

For me part of the problem stems from the fact that it actually is starting to feel that people are being 'forced' into work.
It's sort of being dressed up as choice, but the more you take from families with a SAHP and give to families with two working parents, the harder it is for people to truly have a choice.
It's not necessarily about this latest scheme as I agree in theory if you are at home with a child, then the whole point is you don't need child care.
But in general, politicians harp on about giving people (women) the option to work by providing quality care at affordable rates. But they make it harder and harder to be at home with your own kids and it is starting to feel to me more as though it is about employment stats. I have an MA (in Education) so I'm reasonably well qualified, but I've always worked for charities so I don't get much. Childcare costs before dd was 3 took up most of my salary, but what did improve was the stats - I was working and providing work for her carer, and hey presto, you have two people employed.
DH also works for a charity - not having me in work is tough and barely affordable. Child care costs have helped enable me to go back to work to help finance the family - whether we really wanted that or not.
I listen to politicians on the radio and they go on about providing quality child care and giving people choice. Well, I think I'm quality child care, and I think dd's best interests would have been served by having me home, but all the support is for 'getting me back to work', although the difference has been marginal to be fair.

I hope somewhere in that is something that makes sense. I don't necessarily want something for nothing (although I wouldn't say no!) and I don't begrudge other people wanting to work, but don't make it financially very hard for me to stay at home, make it financially easy for me to work, and then pretend it's all my own choice!

Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 18:02:25

Their is care available for 2+. Free. Not for a fully day but enough for mum to take a piss in peace.

That isn't what is being offered as it is already available and is being extended.

This is specifically for working parents to assist with the cost of child care outside the available free hours. And therefore designed to do exactly what someone up there says - make working a more alias tic choice to more parents.

Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 18:06:10

Their?? Fvck me. I deserve to be totally ignored henceforth

Overberries Sun 31-Mar-13 18:08:14

Childcare funding to apply for jobs? When I was applying for a new job, whilst working 4 days a week and paying £1800 pm for 2 DC in childcare, all applications and interview prep was done after work and parent duties in the evenings? Maybe I should have expected some extra help??

Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 18:14:28

I don't understand that babysea. Isn't it right that you earn more by working than you do by not working?

Overberries...quite.

niceguy2 Sun 31-Mar-13 18:14:53

All the 'moaning' is bollocks to be honest and I think more whipped up by the media than anything else.

SAHM's are in the same position before and after the government plans. They are no better/no worse off. They made a conscious choice to be a SAHM rather than work and knew full well they don't get 'paid' for this choice.

They also are typically very fortunate that their OH's earn enough for them to have that choice. Many do not.

I honestly think it's more the media trying to find something negative to say about what otherwise seems like a very sensible policy to me.

What next? Moaning because the government are paying a subsidy to my next door neighbour who has solar panels and I don't?

BruthasTortoise Sun 31-Mar-13 18:15:15

That's a very good point, Overberries. I suppose the argument could be made that WAHPs do get breaks in their working day where they could prepare for interviews, etc. Though if your working day is anything like mine that just wouldn't happen. Mmhh have to think about this a bit more.

Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 18:19:02

What's a WAHP? I work full time at home. Am I one?

BruthasTortoise Sun 31-Mar-13 18:21:05

Typo sorry should have been WOHP.

Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 18:21:27

Still none the wiser!

BruthasTortoise Sun 31-Mar-13 18:23:08

Work Outside the Home Parent. Sorry I though that was the standard Mumsnet acronym, an I wrong?

Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 18:24:40

Ah. I'm new 'round here

Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 18:25:06

Too busy working wink

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Sun 31-Mar-13 18:28:45

Susietwo, I think the hours of free nursery for over 2s are only for certain demographics, unless I missed a change.

Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 18:31:28

I think you're right.

Mostly only for those who really need it...

Although I think preschool is increasingly available for 2 year olds in lots of areas. Kent?

Wallison Sun 31-Mar-13 18:36:10

don't make it financially very hard for me to stay at home

But how does this make it harder for you to stay at home? The money coming into your household isn't going down, is it?

And for those who are arguing that parents who are looking for work should be given money to pay for childcare, would you extend that to every parent who is looking for work? Because that would be a fuck of a lot of people and cost a fuck of a lot of money.

To my mind, the only valid criticisms of this scheme are that it is not as generous as the childcare voucher scheme was, and benefits people so high up the income scale as to make it obscene that they are accessing a state benefit. If your household income is £300,000 a year, should you really get state help with anything? Especially when people who earn £10,000 a year or less are excluded from it, despite having their tax credits cut. So one group of people earning not much are losing money while another group of people earning THIRTY TIMES (ie not just £30,000 more but THIRTY TIMES more) are being given money. Now that is unfair.

Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 18:37:22

Not unfair, but unjust, arguably

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Sun 31-Mar-13 18:41:59

Preschool is available from 2, but I don't think it's free. 15 hours free a week From 3 for all. Kent may have decided on a local variation.

But preschool is for the benefit of the child's learning and development, not the parents' time tabling.

hwjm1945 Sun 31-Mar-13 18:42:30

Sham Don't pay for childcare ....so what sort of subsidy are they looking for?a break from the kids they chose to have?

Wallison Sun 31-Mar-13 18:45:54

It's not only unjust but also hypocritcal. It doesn't help low earners who are in work - they are being shafted. Someone who has an earning capacity of £150,000 doesn't need 'help getting back to work' - they just do not face the bars to employment that someone with an earning capacity of £10,000 does. But the latter group are getting less state help while the former group are getting more.

Wallison Sun 31-Mar-13 18:47:05

So in fact I would say it's not about helping people back into work but a tax break for the wealthy. Funded by cuts to tax credits ie funded by cutting money that previously went to the working poor ie people who actually need it.

Suzietwo Sun 31-Mar-13 18:55:04

I'm sympathetic to this argument but don't buy into it completely.

Would you like to see means tested NHS? State schooling?

Wallison Sun 31-Mar-13 18:59:44

No, because those are the type of benefits that it is in society's interests to provide on a non means-tested basis. I don't think that childcare is. And even if you think that it is, then there are the free hours at age three which are available to everyone. I suppose I especially don't think it should be a state benefit for people who earn, let's not be too coy about this, a fuck of a lot of money, while people who earn thirty times less than them are having their entitlement to this cut. If politicians have decided that they can't afford to support people who earn less than £10,000, why decide that they can afford to support people with a household income thirty times that?

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