What Government need to do
We understand and respect the government’s decision to close childcare providers and schools. This will have huge impacts for families across the UK and Government must step in now to make sure that parents aren’t left out of pocket if they can’t work.
This should include asking employers to be as supportive as possible to working parents, and making financial help available immediately through the benefits system for parents on low and middle incomes if they can't work.
Most childcare providers are small businesses, and they operate on very tight margins. If they don’t have any income, they will go out of business. We welcome Government’s commitment to continue free early education funding but this isn’t enough, as most settings also rely on parent fees. Government must protect them – so they’re able to start providing childcare again as soon as the closure period ends.
We know that a lot of people still have questions about how childcare will work over the next weeks and months. Unfortunately, we don't have answers ourselves- we don't have access to any information apart from what government have already announced. You can see their most up to date information here. The Department of Education have published guidance for Ofsted-registered childcare providers for children of all ages, including childminders, nurseries and wraparound childcare and clubs.
We will share more information here as we get it, but we ask that you don't call or email us with questions about Covid-19 as we're unlikely to be able to help. If you have a question about the childcare you use, you can contact your local Family Information Service (FIS).
These are some organizations which may be able to help if you are worried about work or benefits while your child can't attend school or childcare. Please contact us if you know of other services we should include.
- Gov.uk has written guidance on how to deal with the outbreak, including information about employment.
- Citizens Advice has produced a useful guide to dealing with the outbreak, including information about paying bills and going to work.
- Turn 2 Us has updated its benefits guidance in response to the outbreak.
- Working Families has produced a guide to employment rights and financial support in response to the Covid-19 outbreak.
- Maternity Action offers free legal advice on employment rights for pregnant and new mothers.
- Child Poverty Action Group provides advice and support for families living in poverty.
- Mental Health Foundation offers advice about dealing with changes to ways of working in the current outbreak.
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