Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

Fact: families pay less for child care

It’s no surprise that recently published CPI figures show a reduction in the cost of child care for families Minister for Community Services, Larry Anthony said today.

“The Coalition Government’s unprecedented $5.6 billion over 4 years (to 2003-04) clearly demonstrates our determination to ensure child care is of the highest quality, and importantly, more affordable,” said Mr Anthony.

“An additional $900 million went to child care with the introduction of the simpler and more generous Child Care Benefit (CCB).

“The Government has also kept costs down by ensuring child care fees are GST free and allowing child care services to claim tax credits for GST they have paid.

“The introduction of the CCB resulted in families paying substantially less for child care than under the old and sometimes confusing system.”

Under CCB, assistance has increased significantly for families on low and middle incomes. Low income families can now receive up to $122 per week for 1 child, $255 per week for 2 children, and $398 per week for 3 children in full time approved care.

“This extra help is good news for families, in their constant challenge to balance work, community and family commitments,” Mr Anthony said.

“Increases in the income limits under CCB has also meant even more families can now receive CCB to help with their child care costs.

“Parents are now paying less for child care,” Mr Anthony said.

For example, a family with an annual income of $30,000 and 1 child in full time care used to pay around $61 per week. Under CCB they now only pay $50 per week, saving around $11.

Families with an annual income of $50,000 and 2 children in full time care used to pay around $119 per week. Under CCB, they now pay $85 per week, saving $33.

“The introduction of the CCB has obviously been a success – making child care far more affordable,” Mr Anthony said.