Oxfam Cymru responds to Committee’s inquiry into childcare in Wales

Today the Welsh Parliament’s Equality and Social Justice Committee has published a new report examining the barriers that childcare provision can present for parents, particularly women, entering and progressing in the labour market.

In its report, ‘Minding the future, The childcare barrier facing working parents,’ the Committee calls for the Welsh Government to expand and improve its subsidised childcare scheme currently available to some parents across Wales.

Under the Welsh Government and Plaid Cymru’s cooperation agreement, the existing Childcare Offer is due to be expanded, but the Committee notes that ‘simply expanding the current offer without addressing these issues will lead to further problems’.

Sarah Rees, Head of Oxfam Cymru, gave evidence to the Inquiry, calling for the Welsh Government’s existing Childcare Offer to be urgently reviewed and expanded to help tackle poverty and gender inequality across the country.

Responding to its report, she welcomed the Committee’s call on the Welsh Government to address the gap between maternity/parental leave ending and subsidised childcare beginning.

Sarah Rees said: “This report shines a welcome spotlight on the yawning gaps in support that exist within the Welsh Government’s childcare scheme. As it stands, Wales’ Childcare Offer is failing far too many parents: particularly those who are already living in poverty. Instead of simply further rolling out a fundamentally flawed scheme, Welsh Labour and Plaid Cymru must seize the chance to build a fairer, more equal Wales, by completely overhauling the Childcare Offer so that’s available to all parents, sooner.”


For more information and interviews, please contact: Rebecca Lozza, Oxfam Media and Communications Adviser, Scotland and Wales: rlozza1@oxfam.org.uk / 07917738450

Notes to Editors